Marie Jean Filewood (nee Martin) recently celebrated her 100th birthday 50 metres from where she was born at Burrell Creek.
One hundred and twenty family and friends attended the party at the Burrell Creek Community Hall, which was catered for brilliantly by the ladies of the Burrell Creek Youth and Community Association and the Kimbriki Craft Group.
The Martin family was one of the pioneering families of the Burrell Creek area. Marie's great grandparents settled in the area in 1853.
In an era of large families, Marie's parents Sam and Elsie Martin had ten children, Marie being the fifth.
Marie had five sisters - Hazel, Dulcie, Rita, Daisy and Joy and four brothers - Tom, Ron, Vince and Johnny, and 75 first cousins.
Many of the Martin descendants and related families still reside in the Manning Valley area.
Marie attended Bo Bo Primary School, a one teacher school, and then completed some further high school education by correspondence before leaving to help in the family home and to assist in helping in the store, petrol pumps and post office next to the family home on the crest of the hill.
The Bucketts Way was then the main highway north so Burrell Creek was a busy place and the post office the communication centre of the local community.
The local hall next door (now the Burrell Creek Community Hall) hosted many community activities including wedding breakfasts, local meetings, card nights and of course dances and balls.
The hall was also used as emergency accommodation for travellers stranded due to breakdowns, fire or floods.
Life on the land was hard between the two World Wars but Marie remembers a very happy and busy life living in Burrell Creek.
And of course there was sport, Australians were sports mad, and the Martins were no exception.
Tennis, football and cricket were the local sports with the local villages and towns having their own teams, and competition was fierce.
When they weren't playing for Burrell Creek the Martins were playing endless games of cricket on the path in front of the Burrell Creek house.
They became very good; so good that all of Marie's brothers became noted cricketers and her brother John played cricket for NSW and Australia.
In 1942 Marie was working on the telephone exchange at the Taree Post Office where she met her future husband Rex Filewood who was stationed at the RAAF Nabiac airfield.
They married in November 1942 at the Burrell Creek Methodist Church and Marie lived in Burrell Creek until Rex returned from active service in New Guinea.
Marie and Rex spent the rest of their married life moving around NSW as Rex studied to become an accountant and worked his way up to an executive position in what was then the NSW Department of Main Roads.
They retired to Taree in 1979 and in 1994 moved to the Banyula retirement village in Old Bar.
Rex died in 1999 and Marie still lives in Banyula with her caring daughter Virginia.
Throughout her life Marie has always been deeply involved in her local church and in supporting and raising funds for charity.
A notable achievement was being awarded Gold Achiever for her efforts in raising money for the 40 hour famine.
Marie has a good memory and is able to relate many stories of the good times she has experienced and changes she has seen over her life time.
Marie has three children, Philip, Virginia and Elizabeth, 11 grandchildren, 14 great grandchildren, and one great great grandchild.
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