An American veteran has made a pilgrimage to the grave of his friend, the only Scot to die in the Vietnam War.
Tom Pryor, 72, served alongside US Marine Alexander “Scotty” Chisholm, Scotland’s only casualty in the conflict.
The draftsman, originally from Dumbarton, joined the US Marines after emigrating to the US in 1966. But he was killed in action when a Vietcong mortar hit his unit in 1967. He was only 26.
Fifty-two years on, Tom wept at his friend’s grave in Dumbarton.
Last night, Tom, a medic in the war, said: “No one could ever forget Scotty. He was a great friend of mine.
“I have waited 52 years to pay my respects. We were in the same platoon from June, 1966, till February, 1967.
“When Scotty died he was missed by so many of us. I am going to a veteran’s reunion in September and will tell them about the visit.
“He is remembered fondly. He was older than us and we looked up to him.
“You can imagine the loss we felt, and still feel, when he was killed.”
Tom, from Kansas, went to Alexander’s grave during a holiday in Scotland with his wife, Debbie, daughter Brenda and son Jonathan.
Dumbarton Cemetery charge hand, Bob Hope, 61, guided them to the graveside. He said: “Tom and his family arrived, looking for the spot where he was buried. He bent down and touched the gravestone and wept.
“I have seen many things over my 42 years here, but this was one of the most touching.”
Alexander Chisholm’s funeral was attended by 4,000 mourners who watched as he was buried with full military honours.
His nephew, Stephen Diamond, 59, said: “We have contacted Tom and his family to thank them for their kindness.
“The last time I saw my uncle was when he came home on leave to Dumbarton from Vietnam for my First Communion.
“When I went to wave him off, he had a tear in his eye. It seems that not long after that he was killed.”