CALUM TURNER was considered a pillar of the Sauchie community – at only 16 years old.

The teenager touched the lives of so many in the Wee County, having shown himself to be a caring and loving young man.

He gave of his time freely, always thinking of others. His personality was infectious and he refused to be beaten down by his circumstances.

Indeed, his vibrant nature will be sorely missed in Sauchie, as the community mourns the loss of one town's most precious sons.

After being diagnosed with Burkitt lymphoma in August, Calum spent the next few months in hospital, coming home one day at a time to spend time with his family.

On December 23, he was told he had around one week left. However, a battler to the end, he died on January 5.

Being in hospital during the Covid regulations meant only Laura, his mum, was allowed to go in with him and his dad Keith and big sister Kate only saw him on the days he was allowed out, or on FaceTime every day.

Joking that getting out was like a day release from prison, his sister Kate says they would spend their days going walks to Bridge of Allan to enjoy a chippy or he would be on his Xbox.

Thankfully, he was able to come home to spend Christmas and New Year with his family.

Kate, who referred to Calum as her "little big brother" due to his height, remember a young man who spent his whole life immersed in a community he deeply cared for.

She said: "He was really into music, arts and drama. He played guitar, piano and he sang at a few community concerts as well.

"He did loads of volunteer work at Sauchie Community Group. He was involved since he was born, but once he was old enough to visit himself, he was really involved."

Kate laughs when asked about her little brother's music taste, saying he liked a wide range of artists from 60s music to Yungblud, although she says that wasn't her cup of tea.

Typically, Kate says when they were both younger they were fighting constantly; however, as they grew up they became inseparable.

When Kate moved through to Edinburgh, Calum would regularly come and stay and they would spend their time on days out, playing mini golf and getting away from the shire.

They would also travel all over Scotland to enjoy drag shows, with Calum even playing a drag queen in his school play.

She says: "I'd just get a text randomly that said, 'I miss you' and I'd be like 'whoa, I've never had a text saying I like you, never mind I miss you'."

Calum got his Christmas present – a Fender guitar – on Christmas Eve as the family knew they had limited time, and Kate says he was so impressed with it.

He wasn't meant to get home for Christmas if he was continuing treatment, and despite understandably being devastated by the news, Kate says he was so pleased that he could come home, have Christmas dinner with his family and play games.

When he wasn't playing guitar, or "spending his life" playing Xbox as Kate says, Calum would be doing charity work and helping his community.

"When I say he was involved all his life, my dad had him down in his buggy," Kate says. "He grew up with these people."

Keith, Calum's dad, was one of the founding members of Sauchie Community Group, and so Calum and Kate were regulars and had a huge extended family.

Kate says performing at the community centre really helped with his confidence and says despite only learning to play guitar two years ago, soon enough he was on stage entertaining.

She said: "There's a lot of older people and he loved making them laugh.

"They used to come up and take turns to dance with him, because he was tall they used to love it."

Not just content with swooning the ladies at the community group, he would regularly play guitar for the nurses in hospital too.

Craig Miller, co-community manager at Sauchie Community Group, told the Advertiser just how special Calum was.

He said: "His whole family are involved and he's been there since he was a baby, really, at every meeting.

"He could always be relied upon, whether that was taking part in concerts or getting things ready.

"Calum was a consistent part of Sauchie Community Group for his whole life.

"I think he was one in a million. He was an outstanding young man with a huge heart and a huge personality."

Calum’s funeral will take place next Tuesday, January 19, for his immediate family only. 

However, Calum will go one final journey from his home at Branshill at 12.15pm and make his way down to Sauchie Resource Centre where he will stop one last time before carrying on to the parlour for anyone who like to pay their respects.

As no collections are able to take place, the family are hoping to raise money for CHAS, who were extremely helpful during this difficult time.

Visit to make a donation in Calum's memory.