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At 90 Jack retires for a second time

Thursday, 26th March, 2009

Jack Carney is a legend in local volunteering circles but that has come to an end after he turned 90 recently.

Mr Carney has been helping at Lifeline for 27 years but he can no longer volunteer as his age coincides with the end of Lifeline's insurance on him.

Manager Richard Lines said although Mr Carney was no longer able to be insured, he was still welcome at the shop. "Our policy says although we can no longer continue having him as a volunteer, ongoing social interaction is encouraged," he said. "He is welcome at the shop from one to five days per week, for a coffee or to chat." Mr Carney said he started volunteering after his wife convinced him it would do him good. "Jess volunteered down here for about 27 years too," he said. "She got me in. Instead of being home on my own I came down here." Mr Carney said the work gave him time to socialise and help others. "I get to meet strangers, meet people," he said. "I've heard all different stories, the hard luck stories. "It's quite good to be down here, doing something for somebody else. "I help people with their sizes, measuring with the tape measure." Mr Lines said the time Mr Carney had given to Lifeline had been remarkable. "The guy's been legendary," he said. "Twenty-seven years volunteering and I suggest it's not only for Lifeline but other community work as well. "That would imply that virtually on retirement he has been volunteering at least two days per week. "That's an enormous effort. His contribution to the community for almost one third of his life since retirement is beyond belief - just a huge effort." Mr Carney said despite the policy he was not leaving any time soon. "I come on Wednesday and Friday some weeks and Friday the next week." Mr Carney said. "I'll keep coming back. It gets me away from the house."

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