Celebrating 101 years in style

Stan Hilliam turned 101 years old recently and celebrated by riding a motorcycle around Sheralee Place in Howick.

It’s not every day you see a centenarian on a motorbike.

But Stanley Hilliam was made a promise by his doctor that if he reached 100 years of age, he would get to ride pillion on a motorcycle around the block.

So at the grand old age of 101, Stan hopped on the back of his doctor’s motorbike with his family cheering him on.

Stan’s niece Lynette Mitchell says it was a memorable moment the family will treasure forever.

“A few years ago Uncle Stan was admiring [Dr Clarke’s] motorbike outside the Panmure Surgery and [Dr Clark] said he would make him a deal. If he made it to 100, he would take him for a ride,” she says.

It was all set to go ahead last year on Stan’s 100th birthday when he suffered a fall which resulted in a broken hip.

“So that was the end of that,” says Lynette.

But a year later, even though he was now using a walker to get around, Stan couldn’t see why, with his hip healed, he couldn’t still take Dr Clark up on his offer.

The ride took place on Stan’s birthday, with family travelling from all over the world for a birthday celebration in Howick.

If the motorcycle trip was anything to go by, Stan isn’t ready to slow down.

He is a firm believer in striving to make the most out of life and is always seen helping others.

His love of learning and the English language sees him spend a great deal of time studying the dictionary.

He loves to go on outings and is the first to put his hand up for activities at his rest home in Ellerslie.

He takes great pride in being the spokesperson for the residents in his wing at the monthly meetings.

Lynette says Stan is in exceptionally good health for his age.

“A nurse asked him if he still felt the same inside as he did when he was 21. His reply was ‘no, I had no brains then!’ ” she laughs.