Turning 109, Linda Wiggins had three parties to celebrate the milestone

Stratford woman Linda Wiggins has turned 109-years-old, which she celebrated with family including her ...
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Stratford woman Linda Wiggins has turned 109-years-old, which she celebrated with family including her great-great-grandchildren from Kaikohe and Himatangi.

When Linda Wiggins turned 109 she celebrated with a three day, three party affair.

Although her birthday was on Sunday, the parties kicked off on Saturday when family travelled from as far as Kaikohe and Christchurch to see her, her daughter Lynette Harrison said.

They continued on Sunday with a small lunch with close friends at Colonel Malone's restaurant and a few family members, and finished on Monday when the Marire Rest Home gave her another shindig.

Wiggins was born in 1908.
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Wiggins was born in 1908.

"It was super, she lit up like a Christmas tree when she saw the family," Harrison said.

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"She seemed to recognise them all and she doesn't say too much these days and she's really quite hard of hearing but apart from that she interacted with the children and gave them all goody-bags."
Her family travelled from as far as Kaikohe and Christchurch to celebrate her birthday with her.
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Her family travelled from as far as Kaikohe and Christchurch to celebrate her birthday with her.

Five of her great-great-grandchildren were there to visit her and Harrison said Wiggins loved having them.

"She put away a good lunch especially with birthday cake," Harrison said.

Wiggins only moved into the rest home a couple of years ago, Harrison said.

"They look after her very well there, I think they all treat her like their own granny," she said.

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"Mind you, she doesn't think she's old. She just calls all the other ones in the rest home 'poor old people'."

Despite her age, Wiggins was still very active.

"She's still walking and still eating so I suppose she is going strong, still on no medication, it's all the walking she did when she was young," Harrison said.

Born in Auckland on September 17, 1908, Wiggins is not quite the oldest woman in New Zealand, with Upper Hut woman Madeline Anderson celebrating her 110th birthday in May.

Married in Dargaville to Fred in 1929, Wiggins had five children and farmed in Dargaville, Kirikopuni and Oramahoe before retiring to Rotorua and later Te Puke, where Fred died in 1976.

She then moved to Mt Maunganui and spent 27 years there before she moved to Stratford at the age of 99.

Harrison said there was a chance she could make 110.

"If it happens, it happens; we'll just wait and see," she said.

 - Stuff

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