View Full Version : Wick woman's extra special birthday

02-Jul-12, 17:14
Chris survived a broken neck and went on to celebrate her remarkable 100th year in style
A WICK woman was the toast of a town today on the 100th birthday her family feared at one point she would never live to celebrate.
Chris Morrison broke her neck when she collapsed in the town’s High Street, nine years ago and was rushed to the local hospital. She was airlifted by helicopter to a hospital in Inverness and subsequently made a full recovery.
But it was touch and go. Her retired son, Iain, remembers the dramatic day well for he was with her at the time. They had gone down town to shop and Iain paused to chat to a bus driver.
Suddenly Chris slipped and fell face-down on the pavement, bleeding profusely.
Her son was about to summon an ambulance when the bus driver suggested a more immediate mode of transport ---HIS vehicle which was parked nearby. Iain accompanied mother in the bus to Caithness General Hospital, on the other side of the town, and the patient accompanied by her grand-daughter, Lynn, was transferred to Raigmore Hospital by the air ambulance.
Said Iain:“There were real fears for her life. The fracture was what they call a hangman’s break, where the neck joins the head at the top of the spine. They couldn’t operate because of her age but with excellent treatment and a series of special collars she had to wear, she survived. I think the ‘man upstairs’ must have been looking out for her, too.”
A native of Cardonald, Glasgow, the cheery birthday girl, was in fine form yesterday, welcoming her many visitors and opening a pile of cards from family and well-wishers-including that extra special one from the Queen - at her home in Henrietta Court, Wick. Chris was head buyer for the city milliners, Gibbs, when she married her husband, James, just before the Second World War broke out. He was posted with the RAF, to a town in Sussex called, would you believe, Wick.
And it was to the Caithness town of the same name that they settled after the war, Mr Morrison having been appointed manager of the local drapery firm, Fred Shearer.
Sprightly Chris, a widow, is out-and-about most days and doesn’t allow the fact she has sight in only one eye, to hamper her keeping up with current affairs in the daily press.The mother-of-two's recipe for long life....She said: “I don’t smoke or drink, maybe that’s got something to do with it” and added: “Another factor is the amount of help I get from Iain and his wife Barbara. They’re very good to me.”
Earlier, her family laid on a celebratory dinner at a local hotel attended by her seven grandchildren, the same number of great-grandchildren and a couple of great, great grandchildren among the guests.
Iain, who lives nearby in Ackergill Crescent, Wick, said no-one had deserved it more and added: “She’s been a wonderful mother, always there for us.”
Flashback-the nation was still reeling from the Titantic disaster when Chris was born in 1912.
Since then, three different British monarchs have come and gone. Food was expensive and cars were rare, although a 20mph speed limit was introduced. Transport for most, was by bus, tram or bicycle.
The average working week was 54 hours and life expectancy was about 47 for a man and 50 for a woman...excluding Chris Morrison, of course.