David Russell celebrates a century

by admin

Algester bowler David Russell celebrated his 100th birthday on March,14. Story by Algester’s Greg Hart.

Algester bowler David Russell celebrated his 100th birthday on March,14 with his fellow club members at his favourite club, BQ president Peter Williamson was in attendance to present David with his 100-year medallion in recognition of his achievement.

David is a young Scotsman who has been with Algester bowls club since its inception more than
30 years ago, he is still an active member of the club, playing frequently and arriving on other
days to partake in his favourite glass of wine.

Even more impressive than his age is David’s love of competitive sport having won the Club
Pairs Championship in 2002 at the age of 84, he still makes himself available for pennant
selection.

“He played a game in the western challenge this year he still enjoys his social pairs game every
Wednesday,” Algester Men’s president Greg Hart said

“He has a good sense of humour and is always jovial!

“On behalf of all of us at Algester Sports Club we would like to recognise our well-loved club
member David Russell on reaching 100 years of age, an impressive milestone by any
Measurement.”

David’s mother Annie Russell was from Scotland with Irish descent.

Annie in time married and Italian Dino Zanoni who owned and run ice-cream shops in 1918.

Whilst living in Greenock Annie gave birth to a son on the 14th March, David Zanoni.

He was born at their when Spanish flu was prevalent with high death tolls.

He took up soccer which remained a passion for the rest of his life.

In December 1929 David was attending a picture theatre which he did every Saturday.  

It was attended by about a thousand boys and girls when a fire broke out killing 71 children and injuring 40 others, David was lucky to escape.

He left school at 14 years of age and later commenced a carpenters’ apprenticeship at the Greenock shipyards.

When world war two broke out in 1939 David went to enlist but was knocked back from entering the services.  

As Italy was involved he thought that his name of Zanoni maybe the reason, so he sought to change his surname to his mother’s maiden name RUSSELL.

After a while later he went back to enlist and was again refused.

He found out that his trade at the ship was considered important for the war effort and was a protected occupation.  

He joined the voluntary fire services to assist.

Later during the war, the German Air Force bombed Greenock almost destroying the town, David again survived this close call.

David married his childhood sweetheart in February 1942 before having their daughter.  

After the war in 1951, he moved to Australia as he thought there was a better future for his family and eventually settled in Brisbane and obtained work with shipbuilder Evans Deakin.

David was known for his beautiful singing voice, a devoted family man strong work ethics and strong morals.

During his time he laboured with others to build the bowling greens in 1985 at the Ridgewood heights bowls club, (now known as the Algester sports club) and has continued to be with the club ever since.

He continues to bowls to this present Day and is still a fair bowler amazing many with his sprightliness and good bowls.  

He still drives himself around in his car during the day and has an occasional wine and loves to be treated to apple pie.

His wish for his 100th birthday was not a letter from the Queen but a card from Sean Connery.  

The club tried in vain to obtain Sean’s co-operation but was unsuccessful.

On his 100th He was escorted from the Greens by Qld Police pipe band, where he was entered by them, Highland Dancers and Scottish friend who sang scotch Ballads.

A large crowd wished him well.

After the ceremony, David said,” Well that’s 100, now I am starting back at 21.”