Tuesday 20 February 2018

Lipstick, high heels and gin!

Annie McArdle
Annie McArdle
A young Annie McArdle
100-year-old Annie McArdle is surrounded by family as she celebrated her birthday in Carlingford Nursing home last week

Olivia Ryan

'Lipstick, high heels and gin' are exactly how 100 year old Annie McArdle described the secret to her longevity!

Annie, from Cluan Enda, celebrated the incredible milestone with her family and loved ones at Carlingford Nursing home last week.

The centenarian, who bravely survived two bouts of cancer in her 80s, was in great spirits as she joined in with the sing-along during her birthday celebrations.

Grand-daughter Maive told the Argus: 'She was in great form, we could see her singing along. She was aware it was her 100th birthday, and I know that if she was ever asked what her secret to long life was she would always say 'lipstick, high heels and gin!'

Annie was born in a house along Quay street that was also Fitzgerald's pub. She was the second eldest of a family of seven, and as she grew up began working in the pub.

Having met and married her soulmate Owen McArdle in 1942 the happy couple became a few years later among the very first residents of a new housing development known along the Alphonsus Road known as Cluan Enda.

They went on to have two sons, Peadar and Sean, seven grand-children, and 18 great-grandchildren.

Annie has even lived to see the birth of her great-great grandchild, who is just 18 months old.

'There were five generations celebrating with her on the day, which was really something quite unique,' added Maive.

Annie worked for a time also in Ecco after she got married and was busily raising her family. Like many men of his generation, her husband Owen worked on the CIE yard at Barrack Street.

Described by her family as a 'strong willed woman who always enjoyed the craic and banter' Annie loved to get dressed up, wearing her stylish high heels, and favourite lipstick.

Her love of fashion and beauty had endured since her youth. In her early 20s she won a 'Greta Garbo lookalike' competition, with a photograph submitted by local photographers, Duffners.

A fiercely independent lady, she was living on her own in Cluan Enda up until around six months ago, when she sadly suffered a broken hip.

But with her indomitable spirit, she recovered from the surgery and has been recuperating at Carlingford Nursing home, where staff put on celebrations for the popular resident last week.

'My grandmother also survived bowel cancer, which she was diagnosed with in her 80s. She initially recovered from it, but it came back again a few years later.'

Incredibly she recovered too from that scare, and continued to live an active life throughout her 90s.

The Argus

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