Born on 7 June 1896 at Ellon, Aberdeenshire, his birth name was Henry Alexander Bruce Slessor Dickie the son of Margaret Dickie. Margaret later married James Lunan after the death of his first wife in 1894. Harry adopted his step-father's surname.
A member of the Gordon Highlanders, Harry Lunan was recognized as the last surviving Scottish piper from the First World War.
In November 1993, at the age of 97, he and his daughter ventured from Edmonton to London, to meet with Prime Minister John Major and Prince Charles, the Colonel-in-Chief of the Gordon Highlanders.
With his unit, the 5th Gordon Highlanders (51st Highland Division), he took part in the murderous assault on High Wood on July 30 1916, during which he led the lads over the top playing Cock o' the North.
A report of the fight states: Piper Lunan heroically piped his company into action in the face of a heavy barrage. He got no recognition but the thanks of his comrades....he remarked..."I played my company over the bloody top, right into the German trenches. It was stupid as hell...men falling all around me, falling dead...it was bloody horrible.
"The French enjoyed the pipes, they couldn't get enough. They would sing French tunes and I would play them. The Germans were scared of the bloody pipes."
"Harry Lunan joined the Gordon Highlanders (Territorials) in 1913 as a a piper, for which he received one penny a day extra pay. During the First World War he took part in the horrendous carnage of the Battle of the Somme, in 1916, and in which the British Army lost 60,000 men on the first day. At the attack on High Wood, Harry Lunan, armed only with his bagpipes, led a suicidal charge into machine-gun fire to reach the enemy trenches. This is how he described the action, "I just played whatever came in to my head, but I was worried about tripping on the uneven ground, which interrupted my playing. The enemy fire was murderous, the men were falling all around me, I was lucky to survive. Hearing the pipes gave the troops courage."
In 1921 he migrated to Alberta, Canada and remained very active in the Scottish community and in particular5, among the pipers and bands. He was a good friend of Malcolm MacCrimmon as both had done time in the British army, but in separate wars.
He died in 1994 at the age of 98. He enjoyed a full life and was often recognized and appreciated for his personal sacrifices during his service yo King and country.