Raheen man Joe Butler was joined by family, friends and neighbours last week when he celebrated his 100th birthday.
A mass was held in Joe’s local church in Raheen last Thursday morning, and afterwards the group went to the Manor Hotel in Abbeyleix for some celebrations.
Joe has lived in Raheen for nearly all of his 100 years, and was manager at the local co-op in the village for a number of years.
As well as managing the co-op until he retired at 65, Joe was also involved in setting up the group water scheme in the area.
He was born in 1914 in Oola in near the Limerick Tipperary border as his father was stationed there with the army. A few short years later, the family moved to Raheen where Joe has made his home.
Joe is predeceased by his wife Kitty, who passed away in 2006, and he has five children - Julia, Mary, Dan, Joe and Margaret, as well as 10 grandchildren.
Many would wonder about Joe’s secrets to living a long and healthy life, and his son Joe puts a lot of it down to home grown food and a “fantastic” vegetable garden.
“He always grew his own vegetables until about 10 years ago. He always had fresh vegetables and never bought any until a few years ago. My mother always baked fresh bread every day as well. He is still keeping busy, he has hens and grows tomatoes.”