A lifetime of togetherness

Updated April 18 2018 - 10:08pm, first published September 22 2011 - 6:00pm

READER Pam Taylor wanted to share the story of her parents' everlasting love. The couple, Max and Zeta Hill of Griffith, celebrated their 70th wedding anniversary this month. Max was born in Queanbeyan in 1919 as, back then, the eight-bed hospital in Canberra lacked obstetric facilities. His parents, Reuben and Eva Hill, moved to Duntroon in 1917. Reuben was employed to grow vegetables for the Royal Military College. The couple moved to a larger parcel of land at Fyshwick (now Pialligo) by the river which he farmed, joined by Max as he grew older and later Max's son Ian. Zeta, born in Yass in 1915, celebrates her 96th birthday tomorrow. According to Max, 92, there were about 1000 or so people in Canberra when he was born. He and Zeta met at a Presbyterian fellowship youth camp back when he was 17, and married on September 6, 1941. Max has been active in Canberra over the years: with Rotary, hockey, in business supplying veggies all over Canberra, and at church. He established the Green Hills conference centre. He was made an officer of the Order of Australia in 1990 for his services to the community. He documented his memories of growing up in Canberra in Recollections, a book he wrote for his family. Taylor said, ''Zeta has been a quiet but great support for Max and we think they are pretty special.'' Their anniversary was celebrated at home with friends, family, a cake, lots of flowers and cups of tea. Zeta's wedding dress was displayed on the day. Max said what attracted him to Zeta was her confidence and her considerable musical talents. He said there was no secret to staying married for seven decades. ''You just have to stay around long enough.'' These days, Zeta's health is fragile. The couple's family and friends admire the way the couple have cared for each other over the years and the way Max is Zeta's carer now. ''I believe I can look after her better than anyone else can,'' he said.

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