WWII Bomber Command cook celebrates her 100th birthday

·2 min read
WWII Bomber Command cook celebrates her 100th birthday

Winnifred (Mavis) Magor, who served as a cook with the British Royal Air Force's Bomber Command in the Second World War, celebrated her 100th birthday on Monday.

Magor rang in the occasion with visitors from the Royal Canadian Legion, who joined her outside the Carewest Colonel Belcher long-term care centre for tea and cake and to sing Happy Birthday.

  • Watch her reaction to the birthday wishes in the video above

She also received congratulatory letters from the Queen, Governor General, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi, and had a visit from local police in uniform — something the centenarian said had her worried she was in trouble. It was all part of a "10 Days of Mavis" initiative to send her well wishes.

"It's been quite a week and quite a celebration, I've never had a celebration like that in all my life," Magor said.

Magor was born in the United Kingdom on Nov. 9, 1920.

At age 22, she joined the RAF. She cooked for the members of Bomber Command — preparing meals like bread pudding, rabbit stew and toad-in-the-hole for pilots.


Magor broke into tears at the memory of that time.

"On Bomber Command … you'd wonder how many would come back," she said.

She served until 1946, when she — along with five million other servicemen and women — were demobilized. Instead of returning to the U.K., she boarded a ship for Canada, where she has lived since.

Magor never married, and she has no close family in Calgary.

She said that after 100 years, the best wisdom she can share is to live life as best you can.

"Live your life as best you can because you never know what's around the corner. That's what I did."

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