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Sister dailies’ former digital editor dies aged 55

Calum MacdonaldThe crossword editor and former digital editor of a group of sister dailies has died aged 55, a year after taking redundancy from the paper.

Tributes have been paid to Calum Macdonald, left, who worked for the Glasgow-based Herald & Times Group for 25 years in a series of roles including reporter, night news editor and group news editor.

Calum then moved into the role of group digital editor at the H&T, which includes The Herald, Sunday Herald, Glasgow Evening Times and The National, before taking redundancy last year.

He later founded an online magazine for “positive and inspiring stories” about Scotland called Positively Scottish while continuing in the role of crossword editor for The Herald on a freelance basis.

Calum died at his home in Glasgow last week.   It is  understood that a post mortem has been carried out but no cause of death has yet been released.

He is survived by his wife Christine Jardine, who is due to stand for the Liberal Democrats in Edinburgh West at next month’s General Election, as well as his daughter Mhairi, a 20-year-old University of Edinburgh student, and two sisters, Morag and Shona.

Mrs Jardine said: “I am shocked and saddened by the way this has happened. The whole family is shocked and saddened. We will miss him terribly. We were married for nearly 30 years and Calum was such a big part of my life.

“My thoughts are with Mhairi and we are touched by the kind thoughts and support we have had from friends in journalism and the family. He had a wonderful 25 years at The Herald. It was a huge part of his life. And we will forever associate his career with the newspaper.”

Calum, whose father and grandfather were also both journalists, joined The Herald in 1990 from the Press and Journal, Aberdeen, as a news reporter and, as group news editor, was in charge of the newsdesk both 9/11 and the 2003 invasion of Iraq.

Graeme Smith, editor of The Herald, said: “Calum was an incredibly dedicated journalist and a great servant of The Herald. He worked on the paper and its website for 25 years.

“He was also our crosswords editor and managed our team of compilers as well as answering readers’ queries. His death is a great loss.”

Colleague Rebecca McQuillan added: “The two things that mattered most to Calum were Mhairi and protecting the future of quality journalism. ”

Rebecca’s obituary for Calum can be read in full on the paper’s website here.