Eileen Pomery turns 100 years old

Eileen Margaret Williams was born on July 30, 1919, in Miss Rule's nursing home in Naracoorte.

Her parents were George and Lillian Williams of "Sunnyside" Lochaber. Eileen is the oldest of four children born to George and Lillian. Sister Joan was born in 1920, brother Keith in 1924 and brother Peter in 1932. Sadly her brothers and sister are all deceased.

Eileen grew up on the farm at Lochaber, attended the Lochaber school for her primary education and then went to the Convent of Mercy in Naracoorte.

Eileen and her sister Joan helped their mother with the household duties in what is believed to be one of the earliest homes in the district. She was born into the days when her father worked the farm with teams of horses and when set jobs in the home were done on set days of the week.

Monday was washing day, Tuesday ironing and mending and Sundays were for going to church and for visiting others and or having visitors and family get-togethers. The only thing that was the same each day was preparing the three meals a day, starting with a cooked breakfast for the men.

Eileen met her husband Lance Pomery when the Pomery boys and their father came to Lochaber trapping rabbits. The Pomery boys camped in the old woolshed opposite the front gate to the property.

Eileen and Joan would go down to visit them and always went together, never alone. A romance grew and as courting went along Eileen was allowed to drive the horse and jinker to Stewarts Range to the Pomery family home.

When a horse was not available Lance would ride a bike to Sunnyside to see Eileen. Returning to Stewarts Range on dusk one night he misjudged the crossing over the drain, hit the rail and went bike and all into the water. That didn't dampen his enthusiasm in courting Eileen for they went on to marry on February 2, 1949.

Eileen's first home was a hut on Lance's small farm. They went to live at Tresant and while there, daughter Wendy was born in 1951.

While at Tresant, Lance's brother Charles, a builder, was building a Mount Gambier stone home back on the property. Three sons were born while in their new home, David in 1953, Michael in 1956 and Christopher in 1958.

When the farm was sold the family moved into Naracoorte. After Lance died, Eileen lived alone for a time but then moved to Longridge Retirement Village and enjoyed spending time with her sisters-in-law and many others she knew. Later it was time to move to Moreton Bay House where she currently resides.

Eileen is much loved by the nurses and other staff, enjoys watching movies, the beautiful music of Andre Rieu and others. Her hearing is not the best these days but you can see her tapping a kind of beat to the music when it's on. And she reads out loud to whoever will listen.

Eileen loves visitors; even though she cannot remember them by name at times, they are always welcomed with a beautiful smile and arms up to gather you for a hug.

Eileen has enjoyed many happy family occasions during her years, the weddings of all her children, the joyous occasions of the births of eight grandchildren, eight great great grandchildren and one great great great grandchild, meaning there are five generations living today.

Sadness is part of life too and the family helped her through the loss of her husband Lance in 2008, son Michael in 1995 and grandson Justin in 2009.

Eileen used to tell you that she has had a good life, but finds it hard to remember it now. She has seen a lot of changes over the years. The mobile phones, tablets and laptops are a wondrous thing to see your family on. To be able to share the family photos with your mother on the screen of a laptop virtually straight away made for happy visiting times. Being able to see family all the way over in Canada. Seeing her eyes light up when a photo was taken of her on a tablet and shown to her straight away. And if you can't hug the real thing you hug the mobile phone photo.

When family, friends, relatives and others come to see her on her birthday and celebration day, Eileen's family will gather new photos to help remember the day that Eileen Margaret Pomery (nee Williams) reached 100 years old.