On Tuesday I woke up to the news that Charles Kennedy had died suddenly at his home in Fort William. It still doesn’t quite seem real and was the first politician’s death to make a personal impact.
The Liberal Democrats are in a period of reflection following the resounding 2015 election defeat. I had expected that Charles would be part of their drive back again, championing a Yes vote in the EU referendum and stressing the need for the party to continue to live up to its liberal values. He had been sidelined during the years of a coalition he had voted against, and had lost his Parliamentary seat, but he remained a relevant and powerful political voice, and one I fully expected to return to the front benches in the future. It was also incredibly sad to think of his ten-year-old son having to confront the death of a parent so soon, and the tributes across the political spectrum all emphasize that a great man has been lost as well as a great politician.
If anyone would like to add their name to the book of condolence, here is the link: http://www.libdems.org.uk/book-of-condolence-charles-kennedy