Turning 100 was no different than any other birthday, according to Dan Holzapfel of Victoria Point.
But not to his many friends and fellow Rotarians who marked the occasion with a party at Mount Cotton on May 1.
Dan’s friends spoke glowingly of a man who is humble, kind and has truly made an impact in his lifetime.
Of greatest significance was his generous contributions towards finding a cure for polio, something his friends say was a major contribution towards finding a cure.
Dan said he first came across the epidemic in South Africa in 1973.
“It gave me an insight into the condition and I decided I wanted to do something,” he said.
“I donated through the Rotary Foundation, which sponsored the research each year.”
In fact, Dan became the biggest supporter of the vision to end polio in Australia.
A Rotarian for 48 years, Dan said he couldn’t originally join due to farming commitments which carried him through many evenings, but was glad to be a part of the organisation when he could.
His charitable work was praised by fellow Rotarians at the function including President of the Rotary Club Cleveland Robert Wesner and Peter Marer.
At the party, he was also given various official congratulations including a letter from King Charles and Queen Consort Camilla, Prime Minister Anthony Albanese, Bowman MP Henry Pike, Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk and Governor General David Hurley.
Mayor Karen Williams presented him with a certificate and also talked of his contributions to the Redland Museum, Redland Foundation and Rotary.
“I feel very humbled and honoured to be here,” she said.
“We all know Dan in various ways, but there are children out there who can walk because of him.
“There are domestic violence victims who have somewhere safe to live because of him.
“Dan is the sort of person we should all aspire to be.
“He is a living legend.”
Senior coordinator of the Rotary Foundation Mark Anderson said it was amazing that one man could do so much for a community.
“He didn’t do it for recognition. He did it to do the right thing,” he said.
Dan put his longevity down to hard work and clean living.
The Holzapfel farm was the first farm at Mount Cotton, with his parents Charlie and Lydia growing tomatoes, vegetables and cabbage on the 72-acre property.
Dan attended Mount Cotton primary and high schools, leaving at age 12 to work on the farm.
Dan purchased 84 acres at Capalaba to farm, clearing the bush to grow strawberries and lettuce then later running it as a turf farm.
It was sold in the mid 1960s, with Dan keeping a final three acres, later sold to Mazda.
He now lives at Victoria Point.