Celebrating life at 100 with Eileen

Monday the 5th October 2020 marked a very special day for one very special client, Eileen celebrated her 100th birthday in her own home, and it was a wondrous day! It is not every day that you turn 100, so we were intrigued by the wonderful Eileen. We wanted to know more and with the help of her amazing and supportive family, we learned more about her impressive 100 years on this earth! We feel so privileged to be caring for Eileen in the safety of her own home.

Growing up in Taree…

Eileen was born in Sydney on the 5/10/1920. When she was 12 months old her family moved to Taree on the Mid North Coast. Eileen had 3 sisters and 1 brother, she was the 2nd oldest. Eileen went to Taree Catholic School where she learned the Nuns were hard on discipline. She only went as far as year 6 sitting for both the State Bursary and Bishop’s Bursary. With the family having an irregular income she could not advance to high school. Eileen being 12yrs old got a job cleaning and cooking meals for an older couple. She started at 6.30 am and finished at 4 pm having to walk almost 5 km to and from each day six days a week all for 6 shillings to help the family.

What was it like where Eileen grew up?

It was on the mid-north coast of NSW at Taree. We lived about 5kms from the main part of town, and we had to walk everywhere. It was hard, nothing really came easy, if you wanted something you had to work for it and you had to work to contribute to the family.

Have you travelled around Sydney much?

After being born in Sydney we moved to Taree then came back to Sydney when I was 13 living at Rozelle. Over the next couple of years, I had various jobs before getting a position at AWA where I learned to solder and wire items we made. These skills lead me to work for a dress accessories manufacturer at Berala. After 4 years I then ran the factory for 10 years while the owners spent time promoting the business overseas. I ended up working for one of the owners John Robinson for 19 years.

Then at 17, I was at Carrington Hospital outside Camden where I met my first husband. We married in February 1942 and lived at Paddington. Three years later we lost a son who lived for only 19 hours after a difficult pregnancy. I then experienced another loss in Sept 1953 when my husband Toby passed away.

Three years later in 1956 I met and married Harold who lived in Wingham and then moved up there remaining until 1995 when Harold moved into a nursing home.

Tell us more about your family & animal family

I have one son, John who was born in Nov 1960 and 2 grand-children Danielle born in December 1992, and Shannon born in April 1996. They are both my favourites 🙂

I have had plenty of pets in my time, including a Chihuahua called Pepe, a sulpha crested cockatoo named snowy, and a Bengal cat named Swanee. But currently no pets.

Do you have any tips for getting to 100?

Everything in moderation, volunteering to help others, look to help friends and neighbours as you can. ½ scotch and dry on occasions, there is moderation.

Celebrating Eileen’s 100th Birthday!

Thank you, Eileen, for all of your contributions to this world and for letting us share your amazing milestone of reaching 100 years of life. Sincerely, your team from Vital Home Health Services.