Se­cret to sixty years to­gether

Gatton Star - - NEWS - Emma Clarke and Fran­cis Wit­sen­huy­sen

TO CEL­E­BRATE 60 long and happy years of mar­riage, Ge­orge and Dawn Blaine chose an in­ti­mate fam­ily lunch at stun­ning Wiven­hoe Dam.

“It was a beau­ti­ful day and I gave Dawn a di­a­mond ring,” Ge­orge said.

“It’s a good ring, it cost me a pretty penny, I’m broke now but she loved it.

“Our daugh­ter Jac­qui gave us a lovely en­graved glass vase too, it was lovely to have them all with us, and my good mate Er­rol too.”

Re­flect­ing on six decades of mar­ried life over a cup of tea at the din­ing ta­ble in their Lowood home, Ge­orge and Dawn say the se­cret to a long and happy mar­riage is hard work.

“It’s rough,” Ge­orge said. “Fam­ily has kept us to­gether.

“The most mem­o­rable part was hav­ing chil­dren; we had four chil­dren, two boys and two girls.”

Ge­orge and Dawn were mar­ried at Church of Eng­land at North Ip­swich on April 20, 1957, when they were both 20.

Now 80, they can remember the night they met. It was at the dances at North Ip­swich when they were 17.

Ge­orge said it was Dawn who asked him to dance.

“We met at the dances; we used to go to all the dances. It was old time dance, ball­room,” he said.

Dawn said they be­came en­gaged at the Win­ter­gar­den and Ge­orge “had to go and see Mum and Dad to ask for per­mis­sion”.

The Ip­swich residents moved to Lowood in 1978 in pur­suit of a quiet life­style.

Ge­orge worked as a painter through­out south-east Queens­land and made the most of the toils of Expo 88.

He also had a strong his­tory in local footy, hav­ing coached Norths in 1966 and A-grade in 1977 be­fore fin­ish­ing his ca­reer as an in­ter­na­tional ref­eree, in­clud­ing “the Pom­mies vs Toowoomba” and the Coun­try Cham­pi­onships fi­nals.

“I was a painter all my life. I started off in the rail­way as an ap­pren­tice and then I went out on my own. Dur­ing Expo, I had 65 men em­ployed. I put 32 ap­pren­tices through their ap­pren­tice­ship and with no gov­ern­ment as­sis­tance. I did it all my­self,” he said.

Dawn worked at the North Ip­swich Woollen Mills and Si­mon’s Suit Fac­tory.

“I worked at Si­mon’s Suit Fac­tory, that’s how I started out. I had to do the sweep­ing out and the clean­ing and all the teas and go and buy their lunch and din­ner,” Dawn said.

“I got in the but­ton ma­chine. I had to cut all the thread off.

“I worked at the Woollen Mills at North Ip­swich and I was a weaver.”

We met at the dances, it was old time dance, ball­room.

— Ge­orge Blaine

PHOTO: DAVID NIELSEN

MILE­STONE: Ge­orge and Dawn Blaine of Lowood re­cently cel­e­brated their di­a­mond wed­ding an­niver­sary.

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