Thursday, April 25, 2024

Australia’s oldest man passes away ‘peacefully’ at 110

Australia’s oldest man, 110-year-old Frank Mawer, has died following a bout of COVID-19.

Mr Mawer passed away “peacefully” as he slept at the Central Tilba home of his son, Philip, on the NSW South Coast over the weekend.

HammondCare CEO, Mike Baird today paid tribute to the inspirational life of Mr Mawer.

Until November last year, Mr Mawer lived independently in his own apartment at Gymea in Sydney’s south, supported by HammondCare At Home staff. He moved to the South Coast to be with his son, a nurse, and his partner following a fall.

Mr Baird said HammondCare was honoured to have cared for Mr Mawer for many years and it was fitting that HammondCare At Home staff were there to support him at the end at his final address at Central Tilba.

“Mr Frank was the most inspiring individual – a gracious man and a man of faith,” Mr Baird said.

“HammondCare is proud to have helped him live his life to the full to the end.”

Mr Mawer, who celebrated his 110th birthday on August 15, took the title of Australia’s oldest man in July last year after the passing of a Queensland man Dexter Kruger.

Mr Mawer’s son, Barry, said his dad had contracted COVID-19 several weeks ago, which had weakened him.

“He lived life to the full even in recent months. He insisted on sitting up for meals, he did his exercises every day, and had plenty of visitors,” Barry said.

“He went to have his afternoon nap on Saturday afternoon and never woke up.”

In 2020, Mr Mawer said his advice for living to a grand age was simple: no smoking, no drinking and no gambling.

“These are three things you can choose. The way you live makes a difference. And the schooling costs of my six children was a worthy investment,” Mr Mawer said at the time.

While he has not had a drink for 80 years, Mr Mawer confessed to another vice: Portuguese tarts from a nearby local bakery.

Born in 1912, Frank married his sweetheart Elizabeth, an Irish immigrant, in 1939. Together they raised six children. The extended family has grown to 13 grandchildren, 21 great grandchildren and 2 great, great grandchildren.

Frank and Elizabeth.

Elizabeth passed away in 2011, aged 92.

“It was a long marriage to a lovely girl,” Mr Mawer commented.

Mr Mawer and the extended family vacationed at the Blue Lagoon Beach Resort at Bateau Bay on the NSW Central Coast prior to Christmas for more than 60 years, usually at the same beachfront site. Mr Mawer and his family are so fondly thought of at the caravan park that a street on-site has been a street named in their honour.

The news of his passing was shared on Sunday with the congregation of Horizon Church, Sutherland, where he regularly worshipped for many years. It was mentioned that the great Old Testament character Joshua also lived to 110.

There will be a celebration of his life at Horizon Church at a date yet to be announced after his body is cremated following a private service on the South Coast.

The HammondCare At Home team who supported Mr Mawer during his time at Central Tilba included clinical care manager Chalmain Hansen, care manager Rhett Guthrie and care worker Rosemary Cosgrove.

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