On 27 December 1973, Harold 'Markie' Strachan died, according to a Special Branch report, of gunshot wounds in an incident involving a clash between a Government official and a cluster of NJM workers of which he was one. Thirty-seven years of age, he was a party militant and worked security details for Maurice Bishop and Unison Whiteman. He was a relative of Selwyn Strachan. Harold Strachan is not the same person as Alister Strachan who died in 1977 and was another "hero of the Revolution".
In the years following, his death is described as the result of murder "by the Mongoose Gang." The New Jewel newspaper of 28 December 1973 said Harold Strachan was killed by Willie Bishop. Strachan's death was commemorated each year during the time of the NJM, especially in some major speeches given by Bishop.
Harold Strachan was born in Boca, St. George's, 29 January 1936. He attended Beaulieu Catholic School. He was a skilled carpenter and a taximan. His political activity found him on 29 December 1970 in the Magistrate's Court with 23 others on charges of "assembling for the purpose of committing a riot" in relation to the Nurses' Strike.
Harold Strachan was only one of the victims of Gairy era human rights abuses.
Years later, at the 27 December 1980 celebration of Harold Strachan Day, Harold Strachan's grandmother, then 70 years old, Ms. Janey James, was able to see the ceremony for the first time. Her eye ailment had been treated by a Cuban doctor in the middle of December at the Eye Clinic of the General Hospital, St. George's.
According to a report from the Grenadian Permanent Mission in New York, Ms. James said that Harold had been the 'special child' of the family. He had been orphaned at two-years-old and raised by his grandmother, Ms. James.