A force to be reckoned with at age 99

Hannah Young with a piece she is working on of her deceased Yorkie, ‘Teeny’ (May, 2022)

Her hearing may be less and she moves at a little slower pace, but at age 99, Hannah Young (nee MacDonald) is a force to be reckoned with.

As a young woman in her early twenties, she traveled from her home in Scotland to Ottawa where she stayed with an aunt and uncle, before moving to Hamilton where she began work in a factory.

It was while in Hamilton that she met her husband Peter Young, 10 years her senior, and on September 18th, 1959, the couple married at Clappisons Corner (Hamilton).

Hannah and Peter Young on their wedding day (1959)

The couple traveled and when they went to Barbados, decided to purchase an ocean-front property there. The one property lead to more purchases of surrounding properties that became a ‘compound’ known as the ‘Sweet Life’ resort.  Visitors would have their own individual accommodation and enjoy home-cooked meals in the dining room.  While Barbadian staff were not familiar with some of the dishes enjoyed by visiting tourists, Hannah soon took the matter in hand and began to teach her staff in the traditional art of making pies.

While the couple traveled between their homes in Canada and  Barbados, their staff remained loyal and operated the resort in their absence relying on gratuities given by the visitors.  The Youngs owned and operated ‘Sweet Life’ into the 1970s and, according to Hannah, it was some of her happiest years.

Hannah and husband, Peter, were also avid tennis players and it was the Southampton Tennis Club that first drew the couple to Southampton until, in the late 1960s, they made the decision to move to the community.  Here, they quickly became integral in many of Southampton’s organizations and activities. They joined the tennis club and the Chantry Centre for seniors, and Hannah volunteered with the local hospital auxiliary .

Husband Peter died in Southampton at the age of 92 and, today, Hannah lives in the home that the couple bought when they first moved to the community, with her companion Gaynor Eaglesham.

An avid reader who has more than one book on-the-go at a time, she is also accomplished at the games of scrabble and crokinole, is a knitter and rug-hooker.

At 99, after a short absence, Hannah is returning to the Chantry Centre’s rug-hooking activity group and, with summer just around the corner, she is looking forward to getting back into her swimming pool.