Office: 1300 0 WAYFM (92936) - Studio: (03) 6724 3065 wayadmin@wayfm.org.au
Australia’s Oldest Man Celebrates His 109th Birthday – On Zoom!

Australia’s Oldest Man Celebrates His 109th Birthday – On Zoom!

By: Ben McEachen

Frank Mawer had a lockdown birthday on Sunday 15 August, with an appropriate COVID-safe Zoom party.

Frank’s birthday wasn’t like anyone else’s in Australia, though. He turned 109 years old, officially making him the oldest man in the nation.

“Only myself and my father could be at his unit,” Frank’s son Barry said about the big day.

“We had about 40 people Zooming in from all around Australia. We had a nephew Zooming in from Brazil.”

Born in 1912 – the year the Titanic sank – Frank has lived through two World Wars and two pandemics, including the Spanish Flu plague of 1918-1919.

Born in 1912 – the year the Titanic sank – Frank has lived through two World Wars and two pandemics, including the Spanish Flu plague of 1918-1919.

Incredibly, Frank still lives by himself in an apartment at Gymea in Sydney’s Sutherland Shire.

“He has carers only coming three times a week to make sure he gets through the shower without any problems. He gets up in the morning and cooks his breakfast – oats, eggs, cup of tea,” Barry said, mentioning the HammondCare workers who support Frank.

Source: Supplied / Frank celebrating his 109th Zoom birthday, next to his son Barry

Christian-based aged care provider HammondCare is so involved in Frank’s life that its CEO – former NSW premier Mike Baird – did the introduction to the 109-year-old’s party.

“All the family, the grandchildren were involved,” Barry shared about how Frank’s milestone was marked.

“We sang happy birthday. We had lots of laughs and fun.

“Dad was just looking at his big screen, seeing these multiple people being switched on and off. We did that for about an hour and it was terrific.”

“Dad was just looking at his big screen, seeing these multiple people being switched on and off. We did that for about an hour and it was terrific,” Frank’s son Barry shared about his father’s 109th Zoom birthday party

Frank is not a smoker, drinker or gamble. He is partial to a Portuguese tart from a local bakery.

He is also a long-time committed Christian. For about 25 years he’s been a member of Horizon Church, the Sutherland worship centre you may have heard of because of another famous member – Prime Minister Scott Morrison.

“My father has a great faith,” Barry said.

“He believes in Jesus and the Bible. He has always been committed to living a Christian life. For Dad, that gives him an optimism even through tough times – and he’s certainly been through some tough times.”

“He has always been committed to living a Christian life. For Dad, that gives him an optimism even through tough times – and he’s certainly been through some tough times,” Barry shared about his father, Frank

Barry said Frank had a “tough upbringing”, which started at birth when his twin brother died. Born into a large family at Auburn, Frank’s mum died when he was 12. He became a ward of the state after his siblings were forcibly dispersed.

One of his brother’s brought Frank back to Sydney from a dairy farm. His brother helped him into a carpentry apprenticeship at 17, before Frank went on to be an owner-builder, living at Kingsgrove.

“Dad trusts that you just keep on doing what you think is the right thing [and have] the peace of God – and have encouragement from your own family, and your Christian family – [and] endeavour to make the right sort of decisions that will be a blessing,” Barry said.

Frank married his sweetheart Elizabeth, an Irish immigrant, in 1939. She died in 2011, aged 92.

“It was a long marriage to a lovely girl,” Frank said.

Frank and Elizabeth had six kids and their extended family contains 13 grandchildren, 21 great grandchildren and 2 great, great grandchildren.

Impressive in light of Frank’s age and the ongoing pandemic, he’s already booked the family beach-front cabin at Bateau Bay for mid-December. The Mawer family has holidayed there each Christmas for the past 60 years.

Given such a commitment, it won’t surprise you to learn what is the big tip for long life, according to Australia’s Oldest Man.

“I would say his secret to life is his family is everything to him,” Barry revealed.

“We still are a happy and well connected family.”

Article supplied with thanks to Hope Media.

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

%d bloggers like this: