Douglas Malcolm Grant, who celebrated his 100th birthday yesterday and still remains active, has put the secret of his long life down to healthy eating and contentment.
“In his opinion, he has attributed his longevity to a healthy diet of fruits and vegetables and physical exercise. He further indicated that contentment is the key to longevity.
“Ultimately, he recognises God for his grace and mercy extended to him,” a statement read.
Some of Grant’s favourite local foods include ducana, soursop – found in the yard of his Barnes Hill home – along with vitamin-dense mangoes and papayas.
Grant was born on December 23 1921 and raised in Cooks Hill, but he also resided in several other villages including Old Road, Pigotts and Barnes Hill.
He was the only child of Wilhelmina Best (née Carlisle) and Leonard Grant Sr. He was married to the late nurse Ina May-Carty, with whom he had five children.
Grants was a businessman who owned and operated heavy duty machinery before retiring in 1980.
However, prior to his business enterprises, he was engaged in a number of farming activities on his parent’s farm in Bathlodge.
He later gained employment at the United States’ Air Force Base in Coolidge where he was a heavy equipment operator.
After leaving the base, he moved on to sugar firm, Antigua and Barbuda Syndicate Estates, where he was employed as a tractor operator, remaining there for more than 20 years.
In 1958, he was advised by his father-in-law, the late Hercules Carty of Barbuda, to invest in tractors.
This turned out to be a successful endeavour resulting in Grant cultivating lands at Coconut Hall, Parham Lodge and Longford, among others.
Throughout his career, Grant was considered to be among the finest tractor operators, particularly when it came to preparing agricultural lands.
He also trained a number of young men in the community in tractor maintenance and operations.
Some of his notable trainees were Carmona Samuel aka ‘Calypso Farmer’, Fitzroy Thwaites aka ‘Sample’ from New Winthorpes, and Steadman Gomes from Parham.
Affectionately know as Malcolm or Manny, Grant is known throughout many communities as the ultimate philanthropist in providing financial support to the needy.
It was very common as he walked through the communities of New Winthorpes, Barnes Hill and even St John’s that whenever a request was made in cash or kind, he gladly offered his assistance.
Grant’s personal mantras include ‘knowledge is power’, ‘honesty is the best policy’ and ‘one must strive to pull themselves up by their own boot strap’.