Nathan’s magnificent milestone
Nathan Harris celebrated his 100th birthday at Cabrini today surrounded by two sons Milton and Ian, daughter-in-law Penny and granddaughter Ellie.
Regarded as one of Australia’s leading opal merchants, Nathan has lived a remarkable life – from being a chocolatier in Sydney, and working in ships engineering, to becoming a gem merchant and opening a jewellery business in Sydney and then Melbourne.
Nathan and his late wife Shirley were great supporters of the arts in Melbourne, often entertaining soloists from the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra at their home.
The father of two, grandfather of three and great-grandfather of six, Nathan enjoyed almost 70 wonderful years with Shirley before she passed just three years ago at the age of 97.
“Mum and dad were an extraordinary couple,” said his son Dr Milton Harris.
Nathan received congratulatory letters from the Victorian Premier Dan Andrews and Governor of Victoria Linda Dessau, however he is yet to receive a letter from King Charles III.
He said that it was “a bit of an effort” making it to 100 and celebrating his birthday in hospital was bittersweet.
“If I had to choose a hospital to be unwell in, the only hospital I would choose would be Cabrini,” he said.
This was echoed by Nathan’s family, who had to cancel party celebrations today after Nathan fell ill last Friday.
“Cabrini is the most extraordinary place, it’s a place of healing, which it has been for dad, and great comfort to know that the people here are so good,” said Milton, whose wife Penny spent a recent stint in hospital with pneumonia.
“And its wonderful to know there’s such a place of excellence and great care, and they’ve looked after dad, after me, after Pen. Such a wonderful place.”
Many happy returns Nathan.