By Kim Hardie

ROYAL Marines from 43 Commando Fleet Protection Group will take part in a charity relay event in memory of Major Chris Moses, a former Royal Marine, who became a Maths teacher at Vale of Leven Academy.  Chris, RIGHT,  died suddenly in January 2020.

The run will start at 6:00am on on Friday, March 12.,with six personnel, split into three pairs, each running two 13-mile legs within a 24-hour period.

Each pair will start off at 43 Commando Headquarters inside the Base at Faslane and finish at the summit of Beinn a’ Mhanaich – above the Garelochhead Training Area – and back again.

43 Cdo personnel have long been considering a fitting memorial for Chris, who sadly died in January 2020.

It was two of the Royal Marines who are completing the challenge, Major Kane Holford and Warrant Officer 2 Richard Hayden, who came up with the idea of mounting a memorial plaque on the mountain overlooking Faslane with a charity run to commemorate Chris’ life.

The idea snowballed and became a team event with all money raised being split between the Royal Marines Charity and Erskine Hospital.

“We chose the Royal Marines Charity and Erskine Hospital because Chris loved the Royal Marines and supported the Corps as much as possible throughout his career.” explained WO 2 Hayden.

“He also made regular donations to the Erskine Hospital and would have continued doing so for the rest of his life.”

“Major Chris Moses spent most of his time helping others; I have no doubt that he would have been doing this challenge if it was in someone else’s name because that is the type of guy he was, selfless.”

Chris, who joined the Royal Marines in 2005 and spent much of his career in Scotland was a respected and very well-liked member of 43 Cdo.

As well as working as both the Training Officer and Operations Officer at 43 Cdo he also spent time at 45 Cdo in Arbroath and at Rosyth where he assisted the commissioning of the aircraft carrier, HMS Queen Elizabeth.

During his time at Faslane, Chris was known to provide Maths lessons to the wider Clyde Navy community, something he took with him when he left the Corps, becoming a maths teacher at the Vale of Leven Academy in Alexandria. 

He was also a keen cross-country runner and was heavily involved with Helensburgh Athletics Club.  In his spare time, he had set up a tree surgery business. He persistently strove to be the very best person and leader he could be for his family, friends and community.

Royal Marines in training at HM Naval Base Clyde at Faslane on the Gareloch.

Major Kane Holford, who helped organise and is also running in the event said: “The purpose of the challenge is to fundraise and celebrate the life and memory of Major Chris Moses who sadly died in January 2020.

“We decided the most fitting way to commemorate Chris’ vivacious life was to run a marathon-distance event up a local mountain– very much in the spirit of his approach to physical challenges. In so doing, we aim to raise as much money for two military-focused charities: The Royal Marines Charity and Erskine Hospital.”

As part of the event, an oak plaque bearing Chris’ name has been embedded upon the cairn of Beinn a’ Mhanaich in his memory.

Major Holford continued: “It is hoped that leaving such a legacy in a poignant place will prompt hill walkers and local runners to make the ascent to the cairn to pay their respects.

“Finally, and most importantly, we would like thank Chris’ wife Joanne, his family friend Kevin Johnson and the Helensburgh Amateur Athletics Club who have supported our efforts.”

If anyone wishes to contribute to either the Royal Marines Charity or Erskine Hospital you can do so at the following link:

Pictures of Royal Marine Chris Moses, who died in January last year, and  and his wife Joanne. And top of the page the plaque to commemorate Major Chris Moses on the cairn at the summit of Beinn a’ Mhanaich.

Meanwhile, readers will recall that Chris, a popular Vale of Leven Academy school teacher whose wife is a highly regarded veterinary surgeon in the Helensburgh area died suddenly in Rhu.

Former Faslane-based Royal Marine, Chris Moses, 37, collapsed while helping out on a tree surgery project.

Tributes were paid on social media to Chris, a “bright, cheerful and handsome” young teacher who chose teaching as a profession after leaving the military.

He had worked for a time as a professional tree surgeon before deciding his career was in teaching, and he was very popular at the Vale Academy, where he taught.

An air ambulance and police rushed to the scene of the tragedy at around 3.35pm after the alarm was raised and Chris’s sudden death was reported.

The professional tree surgeon, from Cardross, had previously served for 13 years as a Royal Marine, with whom he did tours in troubled Iraq and Afghanistan.

Academy head teacher Matthew Boyle paid tribute to Chris at the time and told how he will be missed by colleagues and pupils at the Alexandria school.

An experienced runner, Chris was also club president at Helensburgh AAC and competed in races including the Loch Lomond 10K last summer.

Kevin Johnson, race director and chairman of the Babcock 10k series, paid tribute to his close friend, describing him as a “young man in the prime of his life.  He was a very brave man who served his country as a Royal Marine, a professional and diligent tree surgeon and a newly qualified teacher, who was also a highly regarded tutor.  He was the kind of person who would do anything for anyone. ”


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