Giant party for mum with 'cheeky spark'

Sarah Dore, of Invercargill, marked her 100th birthday on February 4, 2013.
Sarah Dore, of Invercargill, marked her 100th birthday on February 4, 2013.

Sarah Dore may have lived for more than a century, but she still manages to cause trouble at her retirement village.

Mrs Dore, known as Sadie, keeps the nurses on their toes at the Rowena Jackson Retirement Village, despite turning 100 on Monday, and jokingly maintains she is only half the age of most of the nurses at the home.

Her family threw a birthday party for her earlier in the week.

The mother of eight was born in Invercargill on February 4, 1913, sharing a birthday with civil rights activist Rosa Parks.

All eight of her children, 18 grandchildren and 17 great grandchildren gathered at the village to celebrate the milestone, one she was certain she would reach.

"She told us many years ago that she was going to get a telegram from the Queen," her son Albert Dore said.

The telegram arrived, along with cards from the prime minister, family and friends.

"Not like our family is she," she remarked as she looked at the Queen on the front of the card.

Despite living through a depression, world war and financial crisis, she has not lost her sense of humour or cheeky spark.

Mr Dore said his mother was known to give people a kick from time to time, but her innocent grin won over everybody's hearts.

The great-grandmother has lived in Southland all her life, marrying a builder before the couple bought a farm. The pair retired in Winton.

Mr Dore said his mother used to be a keen gardener, a competitive bowls player and a "brilliant" cook, despite having so many children to feed.

"We certainly didn't starve," he said.

He put his mother's longevity down to her healthy lifestyle and hard work ethic, which she had passed on to her children.

Mr Dore said the family would be back to celebrate her 101st birthday next year, and hoped that longevity ran in the family.

The Southland Times