A big happy birthday to Resthaven Malvern resident, Mr Ian Thompson, who is celebrating his 100th milestone birthday on 3 April 2021.
Having only moved into residential care in 2020, Mr Thompson has lived an extraordinary life, full of adventure and love.
‘My mother was born in Scotland while my father in England, but I was born in Kashmir, India, where my parents relocated after their marriage.’
When Mr Thompson’s mother passed away suddenly when he was three years old, he and his brother, Kenneth, started their new lives in England.
‘My father couldn’t take care of us at the time due to his full-time work, so we were put on a ship with our nanny when Kenneth was only a baby, to go live with our grandmother in England.’
‘We would receive visits from our father every five years when he went on what used to be called “furlough”, now referred to as leave.’
When Mr Thompson came of age, he entered the Royal Navy during World War II, where he met his wife, Iona.
‘Iona was in the Women’s Airforce (WAF) at the time, and we were crazy about each other. However, soon after meeting, she finished her service and went back to Scotland.’
‘Once I arrived back in England a couple of years later, I called her up and told her there was a train to Paddington at 4:00 pm the next day, and that I would pick her up from the station.’
‘I was fortunate she agreed, and I went by taxi to be greeted by Iona and her father. We all went out to dinner that night and I asked her to marry me. It took a bit of convincing, but she said yes!’
‘Cider was the all the rage in England, and her father was so pleased by our engagement, he bought us a big bottle of cider to celebrate – a wonderful memory, that was.’
Mr and Mrs Thompson married on 15 December 1946, and during their lives together, they lived in England, South Africa, and eventually settled down with the family in Adelaide, Australia.
‘We were blessed with three beautiful, but rowdy daughters! It was a marvellous life and I owe it all to my dear Iona who made this life for us what it was.’
Mr Thompson was a man of all trades, working in the navy, then as an air force engineer, and having multiple workshops over his life, where he loved to repair many things.
In the 1980s, Mr and Mrs Thompson retired, taking many holidays, especially to Bali, which was one of their favourite destinations.
Mr Thompson carried on holidaying to Bali long after his wife passed away, notably bungee jumping when he was 88 years old!
Mr Thompson volunteered with Resthaven Mitcham for an impressive thirteen years supporting the site shop and retired in his early nineties.
Mr Thompson’s advice to the younger generation is to ‘let things happen how they are going to, don’t force anything. What is meant to be in your life, will be – and find a good partner to live it with!’
Many happy returns, Mr Thompson.
Every day, Resthaven shares the lives and wisdom of older people and their carers, being one of only a select few aged care providers in Australia offering the full range of aged care service options.
A not for profit, South Australian aged care community service associated with the Uniting Church, Resthaven’s residential and in-home care and support options are offered throughout metropolitan Adelaide, the Adelaide Hills, Murraylands, Riverland, Barossa, Fleurieu Peninsula and the Limestone Coast.