Port Macquarie's Ken Buckle capped a remarkable life celebrating his 100th birthday with family and friends on March 7.
The Parklands Village resident admitted he had enjoyed every aspect of his life.
A devout church-goer, Mr Buckle is a member of the Port Macquarie Baptist Church community.
"I have been a church man all my life and have loved it," he said. "And I still enjoy attending church each week.
"My faith has certainly given me a peace of mind and a certainty of where I am living and going as a committed christian.
"I also believe that we have gotten away from our Christian lifestyle and values," he said.
He married Delle Brown in Sydney in 1943 and the couple raised five children, Phillip who lives at Curl Curl, Stephen, a Glebe resident who lectures in philosophy at Macquarie University, Peter, a retiree who lives in Kangaroo Valley, Jennifer, who lives in Mudgee and Melinda, a resident of California.
He was pleased that his children could attend his birthday celebrations at a Port Macquarie cafe.
Four of his grandchildren currently live in England.
Alongside raising his family, Mr Buckle listed some life highlights as being among hundreds of schoolchildren who walked the Sydney Harbour Bridge the day before it was officially opened on March 12, 1932.
Another highlight was watching Bert Hinkler complete the first solo airplane flight from England to Australia in 1928.
"I was in short pants and stood with my parents at Balmoral Beach," he said. "It was a single engine plane - and very fragile looking - and I remember it clearly because seeing an airplane was a very unique thing for the time."
Another highlight was passing his recent driving test - "I still drive a car," he says.
Ken was born in Narenburn, "down behind Chatswood on the fringe with North Bridge" and his first day at school was at Thornleigh.
He topped his class every year including his senior schooling at Hornsby High School.
"I was dux each year at school and also won a championship medal in athletics at the Sydney Cricket Ground," he said.
"I was a member of the winning 4 x 100 metre relay at the combined high schools sports day.
"Playing social cricket, school football and athletics were also part of my school life.
It was a very good time. I just enjoyed my first day of school right through to my last.Ken Buckle
"It was a very good time. I just enjoyed my first day of school right through to my last," he said.
Ken attended Technical High School spending 13 years on the drawing board for mechanical engineering in designing overhead cranes.
He was responsible for the early measurements on the slipways of the first building of Tribal class destroyers at Cockatoo Dock.
He then ventured into engineering and advertising sales, twice being headhunted by major industrial and rural suppliers.
Ken retired to the Port Macquarie-Hastings 37 years ago, spending several years in Wauchope. He moved to Parklands Village around five years ago.
About 30 family and friends attended a dinner at Whalebone Wharf to celebrate his 100th birthday while another gathering was held at Busy Bean coffee shop in the village.
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