Mary Wright has called Gladstone home for the last 50 years.
Mary Wright has called Gladstone home for the last 50 years. COLLEEN BURNS

Mary loves busy life

AFTER 50 years of living in Gladstone, Mary Wright almost qualifies as a local, particularly when her early years were spent just down the road at Miriam Vale.

“My husband Victor and I shifted here about six years after we got married,” she said, adding that they had now been married 56 years.

Initially Victor worked at the Golding sawmill. “I guess you’d say his job was ‘hauling logs’. This was when the old sawmill was down near where the Valley shops are now,” Mrs Wright said.

Raising a family of five daughters kept the couple busy enough; however, when the smelter was built Mrs Wright and a friend won the contract to clean QAL houses.

“And then we had a Dairy Queen shop in Boles Street for about 15 years. It was a convenience store really. We were open 12 hours a day – they were long days. My husband worked in the shop with me for a few years and then he took a job with the Port Authority as a dozer driver,” said Mrs Wright.

For the past six years Mrs Wright has been involved with the Senior Citizens Club, and has held the position of president for the past three.

“I mainly joined for the company; I really just wanted to get involved in something,” she said.

The club holds a monthly meeting and guest speakers occasionally make an appearance.

“Not always, but for example, at our last meeting we had someone speaking on dementia”. Raffles are a popular fundraiser for the club and a morning tea follows.

“We have lots of different events on – bingo and hoy and a monthly birthday morning tea, plus our regular outings,” she said.

Recruiting sufficient numbers for their bus trips can be a bit challenging, Mrs Wright admitted.

“The centre’s bus holds 16, but if we have more people than that it costs over $900 to hire a big bus.”

She said they tried to keep the outings varied and interesting.

“On our last trip we went to the Calliope Historical Village and then to Mt Larcom for lunch.”

Being involved and keeping herself busy seems to sum up her life and its possible Mrs Wright may wear the president’s hat for a while longer yet.

The shop was open 12 hours a day – they were long days.



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