Some people lead happy lives, some live long lives. Christina Cock got both. Born in 1887 on a bush farm in Southwestern Australia, she lived to see three centuries, dying at the age of 114 in 2002. When she was born, Grover Cleveland was president of the United States. Of course, being Australian she didn’t much care.
To put her life into more poignant perspective, she was 25 when the Titanic sank in 1912, and was still alive to sob like a baby when the movie Titanic appeared in 1997. “Oh yeah, I remember when that happened” was probably not the most common reaction among the audiences who rushed to see the film.
Christina was born Christina Clay, and married the splendidly named Wilbert Cock in 1913. They were married for a pretty good spell of 73 years until Wilbert’s early death at the age of just 96 in 1986. Mrs. Cock held on for another sixteen years, meaning she is still the oldest verified person in Australian history. She was just three months younger than the world’s oldest person at the time, the also amusingly named Japanese woman Kamato Hongo.
She belonged to the exclusive club of supercentenarians, which means she lived to be older than 110. To me it just seems like someone wanted to invent a fancy term to something that didn’t really need one, and then wrote a fancy wikipedia article to support it, and so the internet now thinks that “supercentenarian” is an actual thing. And here I am repeating it, further cementing its status as thing. The term’s origins are credited to someone named Norris McWhirter, which is kind of a funny name, so I’m a bit more forgiving. Oh well.
Back to Mr. and Mrs. Cock then.
Mrs. Cock lived on her own in her own house until she was 109, when she fell and broke her hip and finally had to move to a home to be taken care of. She had a sign on her door with the words
“If I had known I was going to live this long I would have taken better care of myself”
Mrs. Cock was one for humor. She would be, married to a man named Wilbert Cock.
This has been your heartwarming edition of the Funny Names Blog, with the Cocks. Tune in next time for your regularly scheduled bad puns and Manitoba humor.