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M. E. Pirie

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IN tribute to Myrtle Elizabeth Pirie (VR, October 29, 2011, vol 169, p 475), Jack Boyd, Andrew Fitzpatrick and Oswald Jarrett write: Myrtle Pirie (née Levack) was born on Christmas Eve, 1931, into a medical family in Aberdeen, where she was educated at St Margaret's School for Girls. Rather than follow in the medical footsteps of her father and grandfather, she exhibited a love of animals from an early age, keeping not just the more conventional pets but also a collection of rodents and lagomorphs. In her young days she showed a love of horses, often riding the carthorses bareback as they returned from the fields after a hard day's work. This love of the outdoor life in the countryside, especially around Braemar, was to stay with her throughout her life. Myrtle's father, like his father before him, had been a president of the Cairngorm Club, and Myrtle was later to help with the archive of the Cairngorm Club as well as taking her father's place in the Braemar Royal Highland Society. All of these were portents of what was to be the direction of her future professional career and her choice of lifestyle.

On leaving school in 1949 …

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