Thoughts & Memories: Gwen
“I grew up in Wales, always ate healthy, I didn’t drink or smoke and I always worked hard.” These are the words of Bribie Cove resident, Gwendoline (Gwen) Moore, explaining why she believes she has reached the age of 110 years old.
It’s actually quite surprising how many people in Australia are over the age of 100 years old. Records have shown that during the 1980s there were approximately 500 centenarians in Australia. Forty years later, in 2022, there’s about 6000 people 100+ years old, and this figure is estimated to increase to around 50,000 by 2050.
Gwen Moore has the distinguished honour of being called a ‘supercentenarian’ – someone who has lived to the age of 110 years or more.
There is no birth certificate that verifies Gwen’s date of birth, however, the family has always acknowledged and celebrated her birthday as 28 November 1911. The gerontology wiki website, www.gerontology.fandom.com, records Gwen as the oldest living Australian female and oldest living Australian.
When asked what some of her best memories are, Gwen said, “Helping family when they are in need. When my daughter Jill was working, I would catch the bus to Jill’s place each morning to look after Jill’s children and to clean Jill’s house. Also marrying Cyril, the love of my life.”
Gwen married twice, first to Cyril Pearce who died young at the age of 37, and many years later to Ben Moore who Gwen has also survived. Fortunately, Gwen and Cyril had three children together, daughters Joan and Jill and son Brian.
The healthy genes seem to be strong in their family tree as evidenced by the age of Gwen’s children; Joan at 92, Jill at 78 and Brian at 88. Only time will tell how far down the line these strong genetics will go. Gwen’s 8 grandchildren, 9 great-grandchildren and 5 great-great-grandchildren have a lot of living to look forward to!
It was in February 2017, due to her weakening eyesight, when Gwen decided to move into McKenzie Aged Care’s Bribie Cove residence.
“I love the community atmosphere here, the activities and the friendships I have made over the years, but sadly, most of them have passed away,” Gwen said.
Gwen has obviously seen a lot of changes and advancements in the world during the past 110 years. Of all the inventions during the past century, Gwen says that cars, planes, phones, television and man landing on the moon are the most impressive achievements in her lifetime.
Finally, we asked Gwen what wisdom she could impart to today’s youth. Without too much thought and with strong conviction, Gwen replied, “Show respect to yourself and everyone, and always help someone if they need help.”