Community News

105 Years Young

In a journey spanning well beyond a century, Jean Freeman (née Cowan), a resident of Mareeba Aged Care, marked her 105th birthday last week.

Born in Grafton in 1919, amidst the aftermath of World War I, Jean’s life is a testament to resilience, growing up as the second youngest among eleven siblings, she still recalls the era of food rationing and coupons.

Schooled at South Grafton Primary School commuting on a horse-drawn sulky and later walking to South Grafton High, Jean is Clarence Valley girl through and through.

She recalls her childhood in a vibrant family social life of Sunday school, church gatherings, and dances, where her father was master of ceremonies.

She has fond memories of trips to Woolgoolga and Yamba, and the simple pleasures of childhood including hopscotch and skipping. A time when children entertained themselves.

Love blossomed for Jean at a local Grafton dance, where she met her husband, Franklin (Frank) Feeman; together they raised two sons in the Clarence Valley.

As she blows out the candles on her 105th birthday cake, Jean couldn’t imagine living anywhere but her home, Mareeba.