A combined 80th birthday luncheon was the special occasion celebrated by old school friends at the On Lee restaurant on Tuesday, June 14.

Penny Moss, Deris Brooks, Kay Holland, Margaret Stoltenberg, Joan Williams, Pat Woods, Robert Baker, Fred Watt, Janet Coleman and Helen and Gordon Cain reminisced about the primary and high school years which brought them all together.

Unfortunately, Robyn Wangmann, who lives in Ballina, and Yenda Parsons, who lives in Tamworth, were unable to attend.

After primary school days taking place at Narrabri Public School, Narrabri West School, St Xaviers’ Primary and Bohena Creek school, the group soon made firm friends upon arriving at Narrabri High School with the bond held between them never to be broken.

With most of the group having left high school in 1957 after completing their intermediate certificates, school reunions were duly organised in 1982, 2007, 2012 and 2017.

It has now been 65 years since they left school, the friends have regularly been catching up for lunch for the past 15 years.

One of the members spoke to the group with heartfelt words and talked about their memories.

“My three years at high school were some of the best years. I don’t remember any bullying back then, we seemed to just get on with life.

“We went our own ways getting jobs, getting married and having our children. After 25 years in 1982, we got together for our first reunion.

“I’d like to say a few words regarding my friendship with you all.

“We finished our intermediate, closed our books and left school.

“What a great time we had, this included out of towners and teachers.

“Our next reunion in 2007, then again in 2012 starting to dwindle, 2017 smaller still.

“So it was at that reunion, I think Robyn suggested we meet each month for lunch.

“We have enjoyed these lunches.

“What I love most about you girls not one of us thought more highly of ourselves.

“We didn’t judge anyone on life or marriages, when going out for lunch.

“I always referred to my girlfriends from school not lady friends.

“We have all had our losses of loved ones in our group with sadness, but as we did back in school, we just got on with life.

“Look what we have gone through – such as glasses, cataracts, hearing aids, false teeth, wigs, heart by-passes, diabetes, cancer, hip replacements, knee replacements, walking sticks, dementia, but hey we are all still here.

“To make a difference in someone’s life you don’t have to be brilliant, rich, beautiful or perfect, you just have to care.

“So looking back on all those years, I can honestly say you girls are my forever friends.”

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