At 107 years old, Edna Hayes has observed five British monarchs during her lifetime and last week received her second royal anniversary letter, this time from King Charles III and Queen Consort Camilla.
While Edna, who resides at Alino Living’s Adelene Court in Wyoming, initially felt indifferent about receiving a royal anniversary letter, she now cherishes the two she has.
“When I turned 100, I thought receiving a Letter from the Queen was a bit of who ha, so I didn’t bother applying,” Edna jested.
“But when my 106th birthday rolled around, I suppose I had a change of heart, so the lovely ladies here at Adelene Court helped me apply for one then we went ahead and did the same for my most recent birthday. Now I have one letter from the Queen and one letter from the King and I feel very lucky,” she said.
Edna celebrated her 107th birthday on 1st November with friends, family and festivities fit for a royal.
“My birthday fell on Melbourne Cup Day last year, so it was a big day of celebrations for me,” Edna explained.
“I had a birthday morning tea, a lunch with my family, then we watched the race that stops the nation.”
While Edna’s birthday was a particularly special day at Adelene Court, Edna reports that she enjoys the everyday fun that comes with living in the residential aged care community.
“I love to keep myself busy by doing things I love, like playing Bingo and cards, participating in different activities and getting out and about with my family as much as possible,” she said.
“I’m very, very happy here. I give Adelene, the staff and the community absolute top marks for everything. I’m very well taken care of.”
This appreciation might explain why Edna has happily resided within the retirement community for the past 28 years, first living in an independent living villa in Adelene Village then moving into more supported accommodation in Adelene Court six years ago.
“When I moved from Sydney to the Village all those years ago, I thought it was marvellous. I encouraged my sisters Betty and Dot to join me and soon enough they moved into their own villas, and we became known as the ‘three sisters’,” Edna laughed.
“We enjoyed every bit of our time at Adelene together. We’d get up to lots of activities. We’d go out on the bus, have picnics regularly and every Thursday, the three of us used to go out for dinner at the Central Coast Leagues Club.”
After 22 years living in her villa in Adelene Village, Edna made the decision to move into Adelene Court which offers a balance between independent living and aged care.
Edna settled in quickly and soon became a much-loved and respected member of the Adelene Court community, eager to get involved in activities, even after the passing of Betty five years ago and Dot three years ago.
Edna’s zest for life is inspiring but her advice for living a long, happy life is a little more dull: “Eat your greens and stay active,” she concluded.