• Community-minded Lloyd Mattner looks on the sunny side

    Community-minded Lloyd Mattner looks on the sunny side

    Always one to have his ear to the ground, Resthaven Aberfoyle Park resident Mr Lloyd Mattner, 92, has special inside knowledge when it comes to the solar installation that is currently taking place on the roof of the aged care home.

    His grandson, Chris Mattner, is the CEO of CME Solutions, the company that was awarded the project, alongside Suntrix and sustainability consultant Dsquared Consulting. CME Solutions has grown from WM Electrical, the company that was started by Lloyd’s son, Wayne, in 1985.

    CME Solutions was awarded the project through a rigorous tender process that will see rooftop solar PV systems installed at all Resthaven sites – residential, community and corporate offices. The system at Aberfoyle Park is 120kW.

    It was Wayne, along with his sisters Rosyln and Neralie, who found a vacancy for Lloyd at Resthaven Aberfoyle Park, where he has lived now for around four years.

    ‘They said to me, “Dad, this is the place for you” — and I’ve been like a pig in mud ever since,’ Lloyd says.

    Lloyd is well-known at Resthaven Aberfoyle Park. He is a Resident Committee Representative, taking any concerns and suggestions from the residents to the staff. He regularly calls the bingo games and also played Father Christmas at the home’s Christmas celebrations last year.

    ‘I feel like one of the young guys now,’ Lloyd says. ‘I try to get involved in all the activities, including the bus trips and get-togethers, as well as birthday celebrations and general discussions.’

    This community-mindedness comes as no surprise when you consider Lloyd’s 25 years spent in Neighbourhood Watch, and his contribution to the local sporting clubs, including cricket, AFL, and tennis.

    ‘I always made a point, where possible, to hand deliver Neighbourhood Watch letters to the people in my area,’ Lloyd says. ‘It was a great way to get to know people.’

    On the trains and through to purchasing

    Born in 1932 at Mile End, Lloyd likes to joke that it was a dark, windy night.

    ‘When my grandchildren ask me how I know, I tell them I was there!’ Lloyd says.

    Initially going to school at Thebarton, Lloyd’s family moved to Stockwell in the Barossa, where he went to Nuriootpa High School. Lloyd had a Lutheran upbringing in the Barossa, but as he grew older, he was more inclined to sleep-in, rather than get up and go to church.

    At the age of 15, Lloyd joined the Angaston Railways as a junior porter. He worked there for 15 years in various roles, finishing up as a guard on both the passenger and freight lines.

    Lloyd married Ruth Squire in 1955.

    ‘I met her at a dance at the Railway Institute and then I walked her home,’ Lloyd says. ‘The next day I called round again and saw her, and the rest, as they say, is history.’

    The couple’s three children were born in subsequent years, and Ruth looked after them all, sewing the children’s clothes, knitting items and cooking meals.

    ‘I was working a lot of different shifts, and I would be away from home some nights and then back sometimes at 2am,’ Lloyd says. ‘With a young family, it was a hard thing to do, and I would sometimes hear Ruth during the days asking the children to stay quiet so I could try to get some sleep.’

    Deciding it wasn’t the best life for his family, the couple moved to Adelaide, where Lloyd worked as a storeman for two years at MS McLeod Limited in Pulteney Street, Adelaide. He then made the move to become a purchasing officer at Industrial Sales and Service at Daw Park, where he stayed for 33 years until he retired at age 65.

    Mr Lloyd Mattner and volunteer, Vicki

    ‘I could ride my bike home for lunch each day,’ Lloyd says. ‘It all fell into place really. I met some great people and enjoyed the work.’

    Sadly, Ruth passed away in 2012. One of her knitting projects, a pink wool jumper, lay unfinished. However, last year, with the help of Resthaven volunteer, Vicki, the jumper was transformed into two beautiful baby jumpers and a beanie (pictured right). Ruth would have been very happy.

    Across two eras

    Lloyd says he has lived across two eras. The first one was when he was young, and the world was less connected through computers and the internet, and the second one is now that he is older, and technology is more commonplace.

    ‘I much prefer my first era — even with all the mod cons we have now,’ Lloyd says. ‘I remember the struggles of washing days with the old concrete wash tubs, as well as ice chests instead of refrigerators, but people were happier with what they had. I think of what I had, and what I have access to now, and people were more content.’

    Having said that, Lloyd is looking forward; enjoying the prospect of reaching 95 in a few years’ time.

    ‘And if I make that, then I’m going for the big 1-0-0,’ he says. ‘It is great to be alive. Every family has its ups and downs, but really, what more could you wish for!’

    Interested in how to apply for Residential Care?