Af­ter 64 years, Jean says farewell

Central and North Burnett Times - - HAVE THE TIME OF YOUR LIFE... 50+ -

EIDSVOLD said farewell to a woman who was an in­te­gral part of the fab­ric of life in the town since 1948.

Jean Slack’s eye­sight was fail­ing, she had a few health scares and re­alised it was time she found a place where she could still be in­de­pen­dent but where help and com­pan­ion­ship was on site.

And al­though the 96-year-old had many friends in Eidsvold, no fam­ily mem­bers lived in the town.

Daugh­ter Jan Mis­feld in­quired about a place for Jean at the Eidsvold Mul­ti­pur­pose Cen­tre but there was a wait­ing list. She be­lieved her mother needed care im­me­di­ately and was able to find a suit­able as­sisted vil­lage in Toowoomba.

“The good thing about Toowoomba is that Jean’s grand­daugh­ter Sarah and great­grand­sons Fletcher and Louis live there,” Mrs Mis­feld said.

“Louis is mum’s favourite be­cause dad’s name was Louis.”

Jean came to the area in 1940 as a farmer’s wife and raised her fam­ily in Eidsvold.

Her early bush home still stands along the old Eidsvold to Gayn­dah Rd, past Lochaber.

Jean, Louis and their chil­dren Jan and Bill moved into town in 1948 for the school and a few years later, son Mervyn com­pleted the fam­ily.

Jean was an ac­tive mem­ber of al­most ev­ery club and or­gan­i­sa­tion in Eidsvold and es­pe­cially loved the bowls club, of which she is a foun­da­tion mem­ber and where her re­cent farewell was held.

“Un­til quite re­cently, Jean played bowls ev­ery Sun­day and was a pretty good bowler, too,” friend Hinke John­son said.

“She al­ways as­sisted with the cater­ing and func­tions, right up un­til she moved to Toowoomba.

“She’s as alert as ever and her hear­ing’s fine but mac­u­lar de­gen­er­a­tion is claim­ing her eye­sight.”

Jean took up dress­mak­ing in the 1950s and she made the gowns of many debu­tantes and brides.

“Mum still en­joys sewing, so I’m go­ing to thread some nee­dles and leave them where she can find them eas­ily,” Mrs Mis­feld said.

“She’s a bit of a trick, al­ways calls a spade a spade and likes to be in­de­pen­dent.”

Jean has spent her life help­ing and be­ing in­volved in the community, firstly at school, then in lo­cal or­gan­i­sa­tions like the am­bu­lance com­mit­tee, hospi­tal aux­il­iary, choir, Angli­can Guild, CWA and her favourite, the op shop.

“When we drove out of Eidsvold with her, she was talk­ing about the op shop and won­der­ing what the ladies were up to,” Mrs Mis­feld said.

“Since we’ve been here pack­ing up her home, I’ve phoned her ev­ery day and am con­fi­dent that she’s start­ing to fit in. She’s been play­ing scrab­ble and mak­ing name tags and they’re con­struct­ing a mini bowl­ing green at the vil­lage, which she’ll love.”

Photo: Con­trib­uted

BELOVED RES­I­DENT FAREWELLED: At her Eidsvold farewell party, 96-year-old Jean Slack (mid­dle, in blue dress) was sur­rounded by friends and fam­ily, in­clud­ing daugh­ter Jan Mis­feld and hus­band Leon, son Bill Slack and his wife Jan and son Mervyn Slack and his wife June.

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