Wally is raring to go at 100

CENTENARIAN Wally Shaw is not a man to sit around.Having led an active life, even as a 100-year-old he is not prepared to put his feet up and watch TV all afternoon - and he makes sure he walks at least a kilometre every day.

CENTENARIAN Wally Shaw is not a man to sit around.

Having led an active life, even as a 100-year-old he is not prepared to put his feet up and watch TV all afternoon - and he makes sure he walks at least a kilometre every day.

Mr Shaw, who lives with his wife of 69 years, Margaret, 98, at the Margery Girling sheltered housing complex in Gosford Way, Old Felixstowe, was surrounded by family and friends as they threw a party to mark his special birthday.

He spent most of the afternoon on his feet, making sure he spoke to all his guests.

“I have always led a very active life - hard work, swimming in the sea, walking, and gymnastics have kept me going to 100,” he said.

“I have enjoyed life and I mean to keep on enjoying it for a few years yet.”

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Mr Shaw was born in Grange Road, Felixstowe, in a little cottage which formed part of a farm but is no longer there today.

He served for six years with the Royal Navy in war-time, spending part of that on HMS Warspite in the Mediterranean and in Egypt, and is especially proud of the lapel pin sent recently by the Home Office to mark his forces service and 100 years.

“It was a complete surprise - a wonderful surprise to be recognised in that way,” he said.

His family call him the “loving and devoted, quiet achiever” because he just gets on with things and never blows his own trumpet.

In the 1953 floods he spent a long wet winter night in Langer Road in the freezing floodwater, rescuing many people from drowning, bravely going back time and again throughout the hours to find new people stranded and frightened.

Mr Shaw worked for 44 years with the Eastern Gas Board, and in his spare time had an equally long association with the St John Ambulance, both as an active officer on first aid duty and in training others.

His great love is gardening, and for 70 years he enjoyed swimming in the sea - able to swim right round Felixstowe pier.

He also found time to sit on school committees.

Mr Shaw has two children, Chris and Vicky, four grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.

Pay your tribute to Wally for his 100th birthday - write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail EveningStarLetters@eveningstar.co.uk.

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