100 YEARS: Margaret Schollich celebrates her 100th birthday yesterday at Gympie’s Cooinda Aged Care Centre.
100 YEARS: Margaret Schollich celebrates her 100th birthday yesterday at Gympie’s Cooinda Aged Care Centre. Tanya Easterby

Margaret Schollich is celebrating a century

COOINDA Aged Care Centre resident Margaret Schollich celebrated her 100th birthday yesterday and recalled her decision to go head-on with a carpet snake.

Ms Schollich was living on her Kilkivan farm when the snake decided her pet bird would make a good snack.

Catching mother nature at just the right moment, Ms Schollich, then in her 90s, scooped up her walking cane and let the snake know of her disapproval.

The snake got a blow to the head and yesterday's birthday girl grinned, recalling how she retrieved her pet.

Friends and family gathered yesterday to celebrate with Ms Schollich and share a large birthday cake and messages from the Queen, Prime Minister, State Premier and Governor-General.

Niece Eleanor Stephens made the trip from Melbourne and said her aunt's family was one of the founding families of Kilkivan. It was on a Kilkivan farm Ms Schollich spent her life and remains a part-owner.

"(Margaret) has such an interest in the community and loved the farm," Ms Stephens said.

Nephews Michael and John Martin also joined another niece Cathy Douglas in helping the birthday girl blow out her candles.

John recalled spending many school holidays on the Kilkivan farm growing up and it was this early exposure to life on the land that shaped his future love of the land.

He went on to study agriculture, run a dairy farm and teach agricultural studies.

Also joining the celebrations yesterday were sisters Beth Berry and Jan Heffernan who grew up on a property next to Ms Schollich's farm. Both sisters remembered hikes and "climbing every hill" within sight.

The only problem was after a while, Margaret began to run short of mountains to conquer.

"Every school holidays was always an adventure," the pair said.

MARGARET'S TIPS FOR A LONG LIFE

  • Quiet living.
  • Stay out of trouble.
  • Walking - grab the shoes!
  • Love of the community. The CWA was Margaret's passion for years.