Tributes flow for Frank Scarrabelotti
By Luke Prendergast
TRIBUTES continued to flow in yesterday for Frank Scarrabelotti, Australia's oldest man, who died at his Bangalow home on Tuesday aged 109.
Les Armstrong, of Ballina, remembered consulting Mr Scarrabelotti about local history and ending up confirming a family myth.
"I met him when I was trying to find out about the history of the Nashua area," Mr Armstrong said.
"During our conversation we talked about shows horses and shows and we got onto the story of Kate Armstrong, who was a distant relation of mine.
"The Armstrongs were known for their connection with horses and the story goes that in the late 1800s or early 1900s Kate Armstrong was showing a horse, disagreed with one of the judges and hit him with her riding whip!
"I was talking with Frank and I said, 'I wonder if that's true', and he said, 'It is. I was there and I saw it'."
Mr Armstrong said Mr Scarrabelotti would have loved to have been part of Little Italy's 125th anniversary celebrations in April. Instead he sent an apology and a $500 cheque.
Lismore auctioneer, Ian Weir, remembers Frank coming into his office when he was 103 to have a yarn. Frank had been a friend of Ian's mother. On Ian's wall there was a notice about a clearing sale at Eltham in 1920. The notice reported the top bull had been sold for 31 pounds.
Frank told Ian he remembered that bull, because he'd had a top AIS herd on his farm at Nashua at the time.