Kyabram Free Press

Newt reaches 100 in style

- By Gus Underwood

Kyabram’s Newton Tomasini had two big surprises to help him celebrate his 100th birthday on Sunday — an Essendon football jumper sporting the number 100 and the name Tomasini, and also a cricket bat he raised to acknowledg­e his century.

A lover of sport, the man affectiona­tely known as ‘Newt’ got leave from the Kyabram hospital, where he has been recovering from an illness, to share and celebrate the marvellous milestone with family and friends.

Son Graham and daughter Heather (Mcleod) and Heather’s children and grandchild­ren were there under COVID-SAFE conditions to toast Newt at the Kyabram Memorial Gardens.

Newt lived his early days in Daylesford and got his first job working as a deckhand on the ferry on the lake for 50 shillings a week.

One of his jobs was to ride his pushbike uphill to the local service station with a jerry can to get fuel for the ferry, which he had to carry back on his bike.

His family then moved to Leitchvill­e and became sharefarme­rs with the Borneman family but there was little money in that venture at the time, so they returned to Daylesford.

During the Depression he lived in Dandenong and Castlemain­e for a short time.

The family moved back to Leitchvill­e when Newt was 18 to try sharefarmi­ng again.

He got his first motorbike at this time and he and Jack Borneman made road trips back to Daylesford.

Newt got his car licence at 18 and his first car was a Chevy ute.

He has been driving for 82 years without an accident.

The Tomasini family bought a farm at Stanhope in 1943 and during this time Newt met local girl June Morris, who became his wife on December 29, 1951.

Three children, John, Graham and Heather, came along and have given him and June nine grandchild­ren and six great-grandchild­ren.

While living on the Stanhope farm Newt built a brick house for his family and also a cowshed.

He joined Valley View Golf Club and is its longest continuous member, playing both golf and lawn bowls. He was still playing over-60s bowls last season, and this year, up to his recent illness, he had been regularly driving himself to Valley View to play two holes of golf.

Newt and June left the farm in 1972 and moved to a house in Allan St, Kyabram, where he lives alone since losing June 18 months ago.

As a surprise, Newt’s grandson Darren Tomasini contacted Essendon Football Club, which generously supplied a football jumper with ‘TOMASINI, 100’ on the back.

Newt received letters from the Queen, Prime Minister Scott Morrison, Governor General of Australia David Hurley and many other dignitarie­s.

The biggest change Newt says he has seen in his 100 years is the change in communicat­ions — from old landline phones to mobile phones, the internet and now being able to talk to and see his eldest son, John, and grandchild­ren and great-grandchild­ren in Queensland via Zoom on his 100th birthday.

 ??  ?? Long innings:
At 100 not out, Newton Tomasini raises his bat in celebratio­n.
Long innings: At 100 not out, Newton Tomasini raises his bat in celebratio­n.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia