Lyle Sharman has collected plenty of interesting tales in his 90 years of life, including travelling all over Australia and working an incredible 18 different jobs since leaving school in 1948.
Living in Stanley at the time, Lyle joined the army on October 14 that year and was transient for his next 12 years of service, but ended up spending a lot of time in Wagga Wagga, New South Wales.
He says that working in the army gave him valuable life experience, and that because his service was between the Korean War and the Vietnam War training was very tough.
“It was pretty discipline based back then, it was still war time training,” Lyle said.
Based out of Kapooka Base Camp in New South Wales, among Lyle’s fondest memories was one particular evening celebrating the engagement of a friend.
“I took a girl to a kitchen tea for some of my friends who were getting engaged,” Lyle said.
At the party he happened to lay his eyes on his future wife Norma, who tickled his fancy, and despite having brought a date of his own he struck up the courage and started talking to her.
“I ended up going home with Norma instead,” Lyle said through a cheeky grin.
The pair would go on to get married in 1954 and lived together happily for the next 62 years before Norma passed away in 2016.
Lyle and Norma raised two children in Circular Head, Christopher Sharman and Karen Parker, with the latter later moving to Victoria and giving Lyle four grandkids, who subsequently bought eight great grandkids into the world.
“I find it a bit hard to keep track sometimes,” Lyle laughed.
He was well reminded on his birthday, receiving calls from his daughter, four grandkids, eight grandchildren and eight great grandchildren to wish him all the best from interstate.
The staff at Emmerton Park also through a sizeable surprise party, much to the delight of Lyle.
“It was a real surprise, I had no idea until I walked in,” Lyle recalled.
In his time Lyle has travelled all over Tasmania and Australia, including a trip straight through the middle to get to Darwin as well as out West to see Perth.
“I drove across the Nullarbor in one day,” he says of the iconic 1100 kilometre West Australian straight.
“I was pretty tired that night!”
Lyle says that no matter how much you look, you can never see too much of Tasmania, noting that there is always something new to discover if you look hard enough.
When asked what advice he would give to a young person today, Lyle said he wouldn’t be brave enough.
“I’ve always said live and let live. Everyone will work it out on their own.”
Lyle always looked for a way to give back, clocking up 10 years in the Apex Club of Smithton, 18 years with Smithton Lions Club and 20 years in the country fire brigade as well as 14 years with Circular Head Kart Club.
“And I never once got in a Kart,” he laughed.
Lyle is very proud of the three Patron’s trophies that he received, giving them pride of place in his room at Emmerton Park.
Lyle Sharman was treated to calls from his countless grandchildren and loved ones on his 90th birthday on September 12.