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Robert Ernest Monteath married Miss May Miller on January 16 1923. They celebrated their 50 years marriage in 1973 with their children, Mrs Ngaire Calder of Waipukerau, Mrs Frances Templer and Mrs Helen Brown of Invercargill and Robert Monteath of Gorge Road, along with their in-laws and grandchildren.
Robert Ernest and May celebrated their anniversary at their retirement home, no far from where they had lived, farmed and bought up their four children.
They went to live on their farm 50 years ago which Ernest had acquired just before he went overseas to fight in World War 1.
Over the years the Monteath family became an integral part of the Gorge Road community. Ernest's two sisters both married brothers, Niederer.
Robert's father, Tom, had originally gone to Gorge Road as a headmaster of the school and so Ernest grew up in the area where he was later to settle and farm.
Ernest was chair man of the local branch of the Farmers' Union when the name, was changed to Federated Farmers, and he was a stalwart of the group.
He was involved with the dairy factory, the bobby calf pool, the Pest Destruction Board - virtually every aspect of farming. As well, he took an active part in the community, being a member of the first Gorge Road hall committee.
He was also a Justice of the Peace.
One of his greatest interest had been the Returned Servicemen's Association.
He was secretary of the Gorge Road branch of the R.S.A. for nine years and on the Invercargill executive for five.
His wife, May was formerly Miss May Miller, of Riverton, and was one of Southland's earlier workers in the women's division of Federated Farmers and hold life membership of the Southland association.
May's home and family were her passion and her garden was well known for its beauty.
Robert Monteath, their only son took over the family farm.
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