300 NOT OUT
By CLEO SRIBER
LILY Sercombe celebrated her 100th birthday yesterday with her two good friends ? who are both older than she is.
St Augustine's Nursing Home was the venue for a centenary celebration with a difference, a party to celebrate 300 years of birthdays for three local women.
The other two centenarians, Marg Wyatt, who turned 100 in October last year, and Margaret Howes, who turned 100 in February, came to St Augustine's to celebrate with Mrs Sercombe, an old friend from St Joseph's Hostel for the Aged, where they used to play cards together. Mrs Wyatt is the oldest resident at St Joseph's.
"It's quite extraordinary that we've got 300 years of wisdom. We're almost privileged to be able to tap into that," spiritual care co-ordinator of St Augustine's and St Joseph's nursing homes, Michael Donnelly, said.
Present were family members of each of the centenarians, some of whom had travelled from overseas or interstate for the occasion.
Mrs Sercombe was born in the small mining village of Abercynon in South Wales and married Reuben Sercombe, an engineer in the Royal Air Force.
Mrs Sercombe's son, David, said that his mother came to Australia when she was 81 and moved to Coffs Harbour, where she became an active member of the local bridge club, Probus, and the Uniting Church, where she worked as a volunteer in the soup kitch- en serving 'older people' ? her own words.
A painter in oils and watercolours, Mrs Sercombe was awarded a 'highly commended' at the Toormina Seniors Art Show for a painting titled Camelias. The painting is now hanging in the new Rural Clinical Medical School at the Health Campus.
Mrs Sercombe has two children, five grandchildren, and seven great grand chil- dren.