Ballarat's Minnie Cody celebrates 100 years

MANY things have changed in 100 years, but not Minnie Cody’s zest for life.

Mrs Cody, who remembers the end of the First World War and the days of horse-drawn wagons, was the life of the party as she celebrated her 100th birthday surrounded by 140 friends and relatives yesterday.

“I’m happy to be here today with all my friends and relatives,” she said.

“With luck I might be here next year.”

The popular Ballarat resident, who doesn’t drink or smoke, officially turns 100 today but claims she feels the same as she did at 19.

She was 77 when she teamed up with her husband Jack to build seven units in Sebastopol and they did the cementing themselves.

These days, Mrs Cody still enjoys regular shopping trips and plays bingo every Thursday.

Mrs Cody said getting married and having children were her greatest life achievements.

Although Jack died 19 years ago, they enjoyed an incredible 61 years of marriage together, having met at a neighbour’s place when she was 16.

Born in Wonthaggi in 1913, Mrs Cody’ first job was in a sauce and pickle factory.

Her mother died when she was 16 and she stayed at home to look after her dad and four younger siblings.

“When I was 20, Jack and I got married and we took dad and the kids to live with us,” she said.

Mrs Cody has five children, 17 grandchildren, 40 great grandchildren and eight great great grandchildren.