Hugh's gravestone states that he died on 2 January 1933, but the actual date of his death is not known. The January date is the last day he was seen alive. An article in The Scotsman on Wednesday 11 Jan 1933, column 2, pg 8 reports:
"Search for Missing Girvan Man.
Dragging operations were carried out at Girvan harbour in search for Mr Hugh Waugh (60), Kirkwood Place, Girvan, who disappeared from home on January 2. He left the house of his daughter with the intention of going for a walk, and was last seen in Girvan in the vicinity of Ailsa Street West on the day he disappeared. The district has been searched by relatives and friends, but so far no trace of Waugh has been found."
Hugh's body was found 6 months later on 22 July 1933, in the sea 100 yards north of the north pier at Girvan. The cause of his death was suffocation by drowning.
Three months before Hugh disappeared, his wife Jeanie passed away while on an extended visit to Canada to see their daughter Mary.