Featured Veterans

Sunnybrook Veterans celebrate new 100 Club members

100 Year Vests

Sunnybrook Veterans who have reached the age of 100 or older are now being celebrated in a new way. These centenarians receive a special gift and join the very special 100 Club at Sunnybrook Veterans Centre. Richard Ratcliffe, president of the Sunnybrook Veterans Council and inductee Frances McIlroy share their thoughts on how this special honour came together.

Where did this idea come from?

RR: There were 100 birthday celebrations on the units where someone from hospital leadership would often present a certificate to the birthday celebrant, but we were thinking of something a little more tangible to give them as a gift to identify these special folks, as part of a club.

How did you come up with the idea for a vest?

RR: We didn’t want to do a framed certificate, but rather something that would be very visible, practical and that our Veterans would be proud of.  Someone came up with the idea of a vest with the Sunnybrook logo and embroidered 100 Club on it with a poppy. Thankfully, we also received funding support from the Fort York Legion.

What does the vest look like?

RR: In addition to the logos I just mentioned, it’s zippered up the front and unisex. It’s a warm fleece fabric in an off-white colour.

What do you think it will mean to the Veterans to receive it?

RR: We hope they are dancing up and down when they get it! I think they are all going to be very touched that their fellow Veterans here are taking the trouble to put this whole thing together and give them an individual present of reaching that goal of reaching 100.

A special ceremony was held in October to give out the first vests, and Frances you were the first to receive it. Tell me more!

FM: I’m 105 years old, and the oldest centenarian at Sunnybrook. It was an honour to receive the vest. I think I’ll wear it fairly frequently!

RR: It was a very special ceremony with many Sunnybrook senior leaders in attendance to mark the occasion. We were able to induct dozens of Veterans into the 100 Club and it was a really happy day. As more Veterans reach 100, we intend to present them with a vest wrapped up beautifully, much like a Christmas present.

Richard, you’re very close to receiving a vest yourself!

RR: I’m 94 years old and I can taste it. That is one of my goals in life to reach 100 years old!

About the author

Monica Matys

Monica Matys is a Communications Advisor at Sunnybrook.

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