COVID-19: Vancouver Islander celebrates 90th birthday with Model T ride as neighbours line streets

Pauline Gray waves to her neighbours while on a special ride in a 1930 Model T on her 90th birthday. (Michael Briones photo)
A bagpiper leads Pauline Gray’s ride in a classic Model T to celebrate her 90th birthday. Neighbours lined up the streets to greet her on her special day. (Michael Briones photo
Madonna Avenue residents in Nanoose Bay line up the streets to greet Pauline Gray who was given a special ride in a 1930 Model T on her 90th birthday. (Michael Briones photo)
Pauline Gray gets a special ride in a 1930 Model T on her 90th birthday. (Michael Briones photo)

Pauline Gray wanted to have a big bash to celebrate her 90th birthday but the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic derailed those plans.

The Nanoose Bay resident was disappointed but friends and neighbours still came up with something special for her birthday on Thursday, April 2.

Gray was given a special ride on a Model T, owned by her friend Jim Cormier. The classic vehicle was made in 1930 which happens to be the year Gray was born.

“It’s as old as her,” said Cormier. “We had offer this ride to her when she turns 90. And with the lockdown happening, we just wanted to give her something really special.”

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A bagpiper led the vintage car along Madrona Avenue and as they drove by, Gray’s neighbours lined the streets to greet her. Some sang ‘Happy Birthday’ and that had Gray in tears, unable to hide her emotions.

“She was ecstactic,” said Francesca Dawe, who organized the special celebration. “She had so much fun. She’s a really an outgoing lady. So this is a big day. She was so disappointed when all of this happened and she realized that she couldn’t have a party. We just wanted to make sure that we do something for her special day. She got to celebrate.

“It wasn’t quite what she had imagined. But I think she realized how many people wanted to come out and say ‘Happy Birthday’ to her. At the end of the day, she was thrilled.”

Michael.Briones@pqbnews.com

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