Turning 102 'not too bad'

Waimate Dog Trial Club life member Jim Brown attends the club's trials yesterday. Photo by Sally...
Waimate Dog Trial Club life member Jim Brown attends the club's trials yesterday. Photo by Sally Rae.
Jim Brown was enjoying himself at the Waimate Dog Trial Club's annual trials yesterday.

Mr Brown, who turns 102 next Saturday, has had a long association with the club, including stints as both secretary and president; and he is a patron and life member.

The retired farmer displayed a remarkable memory as he recalled the years he served in official positions, the trial grounds at which he had both competed and judged, and the time he scored 98 out of 100 at Geraldine with his heading dog Jan - the last, and best, dog he had.

He was president of the North Otago dog trial centre when the Waimate club hosted the week-long New Zealand championships in 1976.

It was a major undertaking and accommodation in Waimate was booked out.

The event ran smoothly and a prominent triallist, the late Bill Whalan, said it was the best organised championships he had seen, Mr Brown said.

Mr Brown was born on the family farm at what was then known as Redcliffs, now Ikawai, on April 24, 1908.

After leaving school at 14 - "which was normal for country boys" - he returned home and drove a six-horse team.

He served in the Pacific during World War 2. When he enlisted in the army, the doctor who examined him told him what a strong and healthy man he was.

Yesterday, Mr Brown, who now lives at Lister Home in Waimate, admitted the achievement of reaching 102 was "not too bad", but he could not be drawn on the secret of longevity.

"It just happens," he said.

The Waimate Dog Trial Club is only three years younger than Mr Brown and will mark its centenary next year.

President Robert Shortus said the club was in "very good heart" and had very good support from the local community.


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