Ingenia Gardens Geelong salute their new centurion

July 3, 2022 BY

Donald celebrates his 100th Birthday at Ingenia Gardens Geelong. Photo: DREW RYAN/THE PHOTO PITCH

GEELONG resident Donald Mackintosh reached a milestone few people achieve, celebrating 100 years of life.

More than 40 neighbours and staff from Ingenia Gardens Geelong came together for the once in a hundred-year’s celebration last week with cake, music and plenty of stories to be told during the afternoon.

Mackintosh was full of beans last Friday for the century marking occasion. Photo: DREW RYAN/THE PHOTO PITCH


Ingenia Gardens Geelong Community Manager Ramandeep Kaur said the event was wonderful to be a part of and the first 100th birthday party for her and many of the residents.

“Mr Mackintosh has seen so much in his 10 decades of life and we were all so excited to come together as a community and celebrate such a wonderful man.

“Although we didn’t manage to fit all 100 candles on the cake, Donald was still so appreciative of everyone showing up to help him celebrate.”

According to the man himself, Mackintosh has had a full life, but one that has had its fair share of hardship.

At 18, Mr Mackintosh joined the Australian Defence Force during World War II and at 23 suffered multiple health problems such as malaria and pneumonia as well as a stint of osteoporosis which sent him back to Australia for hospital treatment.

After returning from the ADF, Mackintosh became a garment steamer, when health crisis would strike again.

“They found out I had a strain of tuberculosis eating away at my spinal cord, so they put me in a body cast – from my ankles to my neck – and I had to lay like that for two years,” Mr Mackintosh said.

Mr Mackintosh had to learn to walk again with the treatment of tuberculosis and bone grafting resulting in the 100-year-old being bed ridden for a further six months in a spinal brace.

Despite this difficult time, Mackintosh went on to marry and have four children whilst landing a job as a clerk at Carlton United Brewery, where he worked for 28 years.

Years later, after a marriage separation, Mackintosh would get into ballroom dancing where he would meet his second wife and marry again at 62.

After the passing of his wife in 2011, Mr Mackintosh began looking for a community to move to that would give him support, but also allow him to continue living independently.

“I ended up at Ingenia Gardens almost 12 years ago,” Mackintosh accounts.

“There’s support if I need it and friendly staff and neighbours to talk to but I’m able to live here independently.

“Even though I’ll be 100, I don’t feel as old as my age and many people tell me I don’t look a day over 75!”

Mackintosh celebrated his 100th Birthday at Ingenia Gardens Geelong in style with cake, music and plenty of stories. Photo: DREW RYAN/THE PHOTO PITCH


Mr Mackintosh said his secret to a long life is having fun, eating good food and travelling.

“I spent much of my life in a caravan just travelling around Australia and I have such fond memories still.”

When asked for a piece of wisdom for the younger generations on living a long life, Mr Mackintosh was quick to respond.

“Don’t smoke or drink and try to stay healthy!

“I’m the last one left of my six siblings – who were smokers and drinkers – and I reckon my healthy lungs and body is why.”