The convener of the Comhairle, Alex MacDonald, said: 'I am deeply saddened at the news of Donald's death and our thoughts are very much with his family. He was a political giant in the Western Isles but, more importantly, a friend and he will be missed throughout the islands.'
Vice convener, Roddy Murray said: 'Donald led the education committee through a difficult time and later took over as convener of the Comhairle after BCCI. He will be remembered in the islands for his many qualities, both as a politician and, more significantly, as a warm individual who cared greatly for the Western Isles, its people, culture and language.'
Donald Macleod was first elected to the Comhairle in 1982 and became chairman of education committee from 1986 - 1991, overseeing a difficult time for the committee as schools throughout the islands were rationalised. His political skills and personal qualities led to his election as Convener in September 1991, a post he held until 1994 when he became chairman of arts and leisure committee, continuing his deep interest in the arts and particularly storytelling, music and the Gaelic language.
The flag at Comhairle nan Eilean Siar has been lowered in respect.