Charles Kennedy's body was found by new partner Carole MacDonald

Ms MacDonald is the widow of the former Lib Dem leaders' best friend Murdo MacDonald

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Charles Kennedy’s body was discovered by his new partner and the widow of his lifelong best friend, according to reports in Scottish media.  

The former Liberal Democrat leader’s relationship with Carole MacDonald was not widely known about, but The Daily Record reported that they are understood to have been together at his election count last month when he lost his Ross, Skye and Lochaber seat.

MacDonald’s husband Murdo, who was godfather to the Highland MP’s son Donald, died in 2007, aged 49. It is unclear how long they had been a couple.

Delivering an emotional acceptance speech after becoming the rector of Glasgow University, Kennedy paid tribute to his friend who he met when they were both students at the institution. The pair ran the student union together.


“My best friend is not here tonight,” he said tearfully. “His widow is in this room. She is an MA of this university. I wish he was here tonight, too. He would be very proud.”

Kennedy’s marriage to public relations executive Sarah Gurling ended in 2010 but the pair remained friends. He lost his father in April.

Kennedy is survived by his sister Isobel, who lives in Canada along with his former wife and son.