Menu
Lifestyle

Daring Audrey dives into the high life at age 80

Free from the roar of the wind, Audrey Gwillim enjoys the peaceful part of skydiving as she floats to earth.
Free from the roar of the wind, Audrey Gwillim enjoys the peaceful part of skydiving as she floats to earth. Ramblers Skydiving

AUDREY Gwillim did not expect anyone to believe her when she undertook to go skydiving for her 80th birthday.

She did not really believe it herself.

"I didn't think I'd live this long," she explained.

"It started as a joke when I was 60.

"My daughter asked what I wanted to do when I turned 80.

"I said, 'Skydiving' and they said, 'That'd be Mum.'

"Nobody else in my family line has lived long enough to do anything for their 80th.

"Both my parents died at 73, my grandparents earlier.

"My birthday was on January 21, but then came the wind and rain and the flooding - so I chickened out."

Mrs Gwillim is one of those many people whose lives would have been very different had they not fallen in love and raised a family.

"You're given other opportunities and you take them."

And Mrs Gwillim certainly did that, raising a family with all the single minded enthusiasm she could muster.

So enthusiastic was she that it is almost impossible to keep up with her breeding success.

"I think there's 15 grandchildren and I think 10-and-a-half great-grandchildren.

"One's still on the way," she explained.

Her first big plunge was coming to Australia with her parents in 1954.

And she is glad about that big step in her life as well.

It was the family she raised here that inspired her to take that other big step, out into nothing from the hatch of a perfectly good aeroplane.

"It was fantastic," she said, "Exactly as I expected.

"A grandson did it earlier and I saw his video.

"I'd like to do it again some time, because it's over so quickly you can't remember how you felt.

"It didn't worry me one bit, but I couldn't sleep that night."

Relaxation training gave her some handy coping skills for the adventure.

"I should have picked scuba diving probably.

"I told them I'd do it again for my 90th, but I've still got to do white water rafting."

Topics:  adventure birthday editors picks skydiving

Gympie Times

Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

Grabowsky reinvents Lior on stage

Israeli- born, Australian musician Lior.

Musicians are coming to the Northern Rivers

Enova energises local power at Expo

Lismore Heights Primary School kids were excited to be photographed with Mike Haydon and some of Lismore's solar powered and electric vehicles in lead up to Enova Energy Expo at City Hall.

Enova energises local power at Expo

Need to Eat The Street and be safe in the street

Need to Eat The Street and be safe in the street

Local Partners