He played in three Eaglehawk premiership-winning sides, ran a eucalyptus distillery in Myers Flat and tomorrow becomes the Borough’s newest centenarian.
Harold Toma turns 100 tomorrow and will celebrate with family and a meal at the local hotel.
It is just one event during week-long celebrations which started last Sunday with morning tea at his church and will continue through to Sunday, with 180 party-goers expected to help him mark his milestone at the Eaglehawk Bowls Club.
Daughter Judith Toma said Mr Toma had plenty of energy for all the well-wishers who were dropping by.
“He went to bed at 9pm last (Tuesday) night, which is early for him. But he’ll be back up and ready for anyone who calls in bright and early all this week,” she said.
Mr Toma said he had lived in Eaglehawk his entire life, other than a few years away serving with the army during World War Two.
He played in three Eaglehawk Football Club premiership winning sides, including one as both captain and coach. He was also well-known as an umpire once his days playing half-back and in the midfield were over.
He worked in his father’s eucalyptus distillery in Myers Flat before the domestic supply collapsed, then from 1956 took up work at the Bendigo Timbre Company.
Mr Toma still lives in the house he and his wife moved into after WW2, spending his mornings pottering around in the garden.
Ms Toma said her dad had always preferred to spend his days outdoors.
“Mum never had to buy any vegetables, dad always grew them,” she said.
Ms Toma had a theory on how her dad had become a centenarian.
“He’s very determined. Nothing beats him. And he asks for nothing in life, not even for someone to tie his shoelaces,” she said.
Mr Toma said the trick to living a long life was living a healthy one.
“There’s no secret. I’ve never been a secretive person. I’ve never smoked, never drank. And I’ve always been active. That’s the main thing,” he said.
"I've only lived the natural life. I don't go in for fancy food, or anything like that. Whether that's done me any good or not, I don't know.
"Although as is, I wouldn't say I'm out of the ordinary. I'm an ordinary person who likes three meals a day - and a cup of tea and a biscuit at supper.”