Stories About The Senior Residents of Our Community

George & Albert

At 99, George Longest living Resident at Greenway

During this time, he did not see Irene for four years, and two weeks after he returned from the war, they got married. They moved to Australia in 1951 from England, and the following year, on October 27, they became the first people to move into Greenway. He is the longest-standing resident of the housing commission complex.

Mr Leaper worked hard as a carpenter, both with Leighton and as a subcontractor, and the couple toured the world on cruise ships. “We had a wonderful life together,” he said. He retired in 1981 but maintains a busy schedule as he still drives a car, buys his groceries, does all his cleaning, and keeps his apartment in immaculate condition. And when asked what the secret to his good health is, he said “I don’t know. Just plodding along.”

Picture by DAVID SWIFT, from Mosman Daily
Picture by DAVID SWIFT, from Mosman Daily

“I got a lot of aches and pains. A lot of people are a lot worse off than me so what have I got to complain about really? I just keep pressing on,” he said.

Why war veteran and widower George Leaper, 93, has stopped trying to chat to people.

“IT’D be nice to have a chat.” George Leaper isn’t asking for much. The 93-year-old war veteran would simply like to enjoy a friendly conversation when he is out on his regular walks.

But he has given up as he has found time and time again that people are more interested in their mobile phones and laptops.

“They don’t want to say anything,” he said. “I sat on that seat yesterday and a woman came down and sat beside me. I said ‘Oh, did you have a nice walk across the bridge?’ and ‘Oh yes, very nice’. “And then out comes the phone.”

Mr Leaper lives alone as his wife Irene died in 2007.

They could not have children and he has one friend left in Sydney. “They’re all gone,” he said.

He often walks from his home in Greenway Housing Estate to Milsons Point station where he watches the birds from a seat under the shade of a tunnel. He wishes people would talk more often to him and to each other and feels people do not have time any more. “I got to the stage I don’t bother (approaching people). New people come into the flats, they don’t want to talk,” he said. “I can go in and out of there and not see anybody. It’s amazing. I don’t worry as long as I get the paper every day and I read that. And I get my soccer on Friday nights. I’m all right.”

Mr Leaper is filled with stories from his life.

He served as a carpenter for the RAF in World War II and travelled with the forces to the Middle East and Italy.

Albert

Albert Edward Morgan 5 April 1908–6 July 2015

With sadness, we advise that Albert Morgan passed away on Monday evening, 6 July 2015, aged 107. Albert was the oldest resident at Greenway Housing Estate and had lived there for 57 years.

Born in Pentre, South Wales on 5 April 1908, Albert saw a lot change in his long life. He was married to Olive for 70 years. He passed away peacefully at the Royal North Shore Hospital on Monday 6 July 2015.

Albert will be remembered not only for his age, but also his sense of humour and cheeky personality.

A Thanksgiving and Memorial Service was held at Kirribilli Neighbourhood Centre on Thursday 9 July 2015. R.I.P.