At Home Support client and centenarian Arthur, from Boondall in Brisbane’s north, says he hasn’t got an enemy in the world, and is lucky enough to be surrounded by good friends.
Arthur celebrated his 100th birthday on 19 January with family including his brother, 88, who flew in from NSW to join the party.
Growing up in Sydney as one of three brothers, he learned his values from parents he says were “terrific”.
During World War II he was on a break from working for the Army in Adelaide when he married his wife during Christmas leave.
“He came home for Christmas and he and Mum decided to get married, which they did on the day after Boxing Day so Dad could take Mum with him back to Adelaide,” daughter Dorothy says.
That was in 1941, and the pair stayed together for the next 75 years, raising children Dorothy and Robert.
Arthur was a keen pigeon racer.
“I had pigeons since I was eight years old, I bred them and raced them all the way up to Queensland,” he says.
“I’d take them to the pigeon club and they’d put them on the train in baskets, then let them loose at the end.
“They all had special bands put on them for the race and you’d have a clock – they’re pretty expensive the clocks – and when the pigeon came home you’d take the band off and put it in the clock and it would stamp the time they returned.”
Arthur went into the building trade and for many years ran his own business, Ramsgate Fibrous Works, before retiring first to the NSW South Coast and later to Queensland.
“I’ve had some very good years,” he says. “I can’t say there’s been any crook years.
“Life is what you make it and I’ve made it so it works out really good. If you always do the right thing you can’t go wrong – I’ve been decent with everyone and I have a good name for what I’ve done.”
And as for his 100th birthday celebrations?
“It was perfect,” he pronounces.
Arthur is among the newest members of Bolton Clarke’s Centenarian Club, celebrating the lives and experiences of centenarian clients and residents.