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Family’s five generations enjoy double celebration

A family with nearly a century of roots in Airdrie had a double celebration to remember as relatives from five generations met together for the first time.

Bouncing baby Freya McKinley was a very special guest at the joyful gathering to mark both her arrival and the 90th birthday of her great-great-grandmother, Moira McIvor.

She featured in a photograph for the family to treasure with proud new dad Callum McKinley, gran Karen Johnstone, who is Callum’s mum; great-papa Colin McIvor, who is Karen’s dad; and great-great-gran Moira, who is Colin’s mum.

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At the head of the family tree, Moira – nee Graham – was born at Laggan Road in Burnfoot and lived in the same house for seven decades.

She attended school in the town and worked both at the Boots factory and as a lady in waiting to local dignitary Mrs Danskin; before marrying John Hogg McIvor, who ran a well-known joinery business in their home town.

The couple had three children and were married for 49 years before John sadly passed away two decades ago; with Moira then moving to Fife, close to son Colin’s home.

Colin grew up in Airdrie and played his part in the community by treading the boards as a leading light with Airdrie and Coatbridge amateur operatic society for more than 20 years; and was still performing in local productions in St Andrews prior to the coronavirus lockdown.

He had lived in Whinhall and Cairnhill; where in turn Karen grew up and attended Tollbrae Primary and Airdrie Academy. She moved when Callum was just three months old to Aberdeen, where she is now a head teacher.

Callum studied in Glasgow and served in the merchant navy, and has now settled in the familiar town for his family with partner Jamielee Boland and baby Freya, who is now three weeks old and is the first member of the next generation’s branch on the expanding family tree.

Karen said: “It’s a feeling like no other to be a gran – it’s just taken my breath away, and it was quite emotional to see the five generations of the family together.

“It was really special to have the family together and it was lovely for my gran to come back to Airdrie, as she doesn’t often get the chance to do that now so it was lovely to be able to celebrate together in the town.

“She was born and bred in Airdrie and was really involved with Flowerhill Church; she still goes to keep fit, line dancing and aerobics, and she’s a force to be reckoned with!

“We’re a close family and it was very special and emotional to be together to celebrate Freya’s birth and my gran’s 90th birthday.”

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