Barbados’ newest centenarian Joseph McDonald Ashby attributes his longevity to hard work and faith.
And he expressed his thankfulness for reaching the milestone by belting out the hymn In the Sweet By and By to the delight of Governor General Dame Sandra Mason as well as family and friends who celebrated the day with him.
Ashby who was in high spirits remembered his days as a general worker.
“I cut cane in the middle of the day, dig cane hole, cut solid stone and all kind of things,” said Joseph, even as his son Timothy Ashby humorously added that his father’s motto was “it is better to work out than rest out.”
Ashby has seven surviving children — Caremta Bynoe, Judith Forde, Miranda Ashby, Theodore Ashby, Timothy Ashby, Dorinda Worrell and Velma Holland as well as 12 grandchildren and 12 great grandchildren.
His daughter Miranda described her father, who originates from Sea View, Christ Church, as a no-nonsense disciplinarian who was strict but soft-spoken.
She revealed that it was through his occupation, as a general worker at various plantations as well as the Crane Resort, that he developed a fondness for fishing and gardening which he has continued to enjoy despite his age.
She said he has also remained grounded in his beliefs.
“He always reading the bible, he reads it all through the day,” Miranda said about her father who now lives at Thyme Bottom, Christ Church.(KK)