‘Still the same old Rocky’: Happy 100th Maisie Hammond
NEXT Sunday is Maisie Hammond’s 100th birthday.
Her secret is simple: “Don’t smoke, don’t drink, and don’t knock around with bad men.”
Mrs Hammond was born in Mount Morgan and came to Rockhampton when she was nearly 14.
She has been here ever since.
“It’s changed all right,” she said, remembering riding her bike about town with her husband.
“But in some places it’s still the same. It’s still the same old Rocky.”
“A lot of people don’t like Rocky, but that’s all right,” she laughed.
“They don’t like the heat.”
Mrs Hammond often played netball – then called basketball – and married at 21, six or seven years after meeting Ron Hammond at a dance.
“We used to go to the Wintergarden, movies of a night time, then up to Allenstown on our bikes for the last three dances up there,” she said.
“Sunday afternoon there used to be a few of us. We used to be on our bikes and we’d meet at a certain place and we’d go out to Fairy Bower.
“We made our own fun: it was good, clean fun.”
Although she usually did work in the house, World War II brought Mrs Hammond elsewhere.
“It was a little bit scary,” she said.
“When the war come, we had to go down to Lakes Creek to work and put the meat in tins – bacon and stuff like that.
“I was there for a while.”
Now she stays active in the community as president of a senior citizen’s group at Bauhinia House.
Five generations have grown up on Mrs Hammond’s watch.
She has four children of her own.
“It’s pretty good,” she said.
“It’s an achievement, isn’t it?”
“I started that family, and they go down and down. The youngest is six months old.”