By Ivor Jones
Albert (Bert) Collins turned 105 years of age in March. At the age of 100 he was diagnosed with Melanoma and given around 6 months to live. He received an injection to remove the melanoma and at 105 he is still with us.
His birthday celebration was broadcast on every TV station’s Evening News programme in Sydney.
The following day he celebrated with my wife and I and other friends and relatives. Bert had quite a few tales that he told during our time together. One story that he related to me was that at one stage whilst on sentry duty at a Army base he spotted a Senior officer approaching.
Knowing that his army buddies were having an illegal game of “two-up” behind one of the buildings. He asked the Senior officer who had approached for the password before he would be allowed to enter the camp.
The Officer did not know the password and so Bert refused him entry. The officer said that he would come back the next day. One of Bert’s mates then asked him how he was able to stop the officer entering. He said that when asked he did not know the password. The mate then asked “What is the password?” Bert replied “Hell if I know, I just wanted to stop him before he discovered you lot playing two-up. As far as I know there isn’t a password”.
He also remarked that like myself, he too was once a ballroom dancer up until his 90s. He told me that it kept him fit and healthy