Queensland Seniors Week was celebrated in a unique way in the Central Highlands this year with more than 600 senior citizens receiving hand-delivered gifts from council.
Council opted for gift delivery over holding a public event due to COVID-19 and invited senior citizens to register for a surprise delivery.
Mayor Hayes said the initiative was very well-received.
‘A total of 634 gifts were delivered across the region with each person receiving a gift pack containing: locally made jam, a sweet surprise from the Springsure Ivy Anderson Home Committee and Tieri jerky,’ he said.
‘I personally delivered a number of the packs as did all councillors and a number of council staff. It was wonderful to meet many of our residents.
‘A big part of our annual Seniors Week celebrations is awarding prizes to the King and Queen (oldest male and female residents) and Most Grandchildren and Great Grandchildren and it was wonderful to still be able to do this – albeit in a slightly different way.
‘Congratulations to our winners – Queens Stella Daniels and Eunice Gilmour, both 98 years young, King Col Randles, aged 97, Most Grandchildren Joyce Robinson with 35 grandchildren and most great grandchildren, John Robinson who has 55 great grandchildren.’
Emerald couple Joyce and John Robinson were thrilled to win the prizes for most grandchildren and great grandchildren.
Over 64 years of marriage, the couple have raised eight children and welcomed 35 grandchildren, 55 great grandchildren and one great-great grandchild.
The pair met as teenagers, while working at a shoe factory in Brisbane.
Fast-forward six decades and they couldn’t be prouder of the family they’ve built.
Joyce said they were very surprised and honoured to receive their awards.
‘We feel very spoilt,’ she said.
‘We hadn’t actually heard about the awards but then a lady from council accidentally rang our number looking for someone else. When I told her how many grandkids we had she said we had to enter.
Joyce said most of their family were in the Brisbane area, but they make frequent trips down to visit when they can.
‘That way they can do all the work,’ she laughed.
‘Some of the youngest have names that are a bit hard to pronounce, but I do remember them all!’
Col Randles and his wife Edna shared some of their fascinating history when Mayor Hayes, Cr Natalie Curtis and council staff visited their Capella home.
The couple had a pattern of living in towns for 10 years but broke this when they arrived in Capella – a place they have called home for more than 30 years.
Col is believed to be only one of two remaining World War II veterans in the Central Highlands and continues to proudly fly the Australian flag in his backyard.