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trevor lewis smallTrevor Lewis

I grew up on a farm near Okaihau in Northland and was educated at Okaihau District High School. While I loved the country life, I was more interested in science and things technical rather than farming. Like many small boys the idea of flying captivated me and for a period the Air Force was my aim, however our school being fairly small, it didn’t offer the range of subjects required so I gave that idea away.

With a University Entrance qualification gained, I moved to Tauranga for a while (my mother grew up there) and worked for a while as a surveyor’s assistant but for various reasons didn’t continue with that career and returned to Northland. By good fortune there was a position advertised as a Laboratory Trainee at Whangarei Hospital and though I hadn’t up to that point considered anything in the field of health, it sounded interesting so I applied. Being the only applicant I guess it was no surprise that I got the job and so commenced a most interesting life’s work which I have never regretted. But I hadn’t forgotten flying and it wasn’t long before I took an evening part time job with a commercial cleaner to earn extra money to pay for flying lessons, eventually gaining my Private Pilots Licence.

I married in 1961 and soon after, we moved to Nelson where I took up a position in the new private medical laboratory opened by my former Pathologist boss at Whangarei. Fortuitous indeed. Being in on the ground floor in a new business was a great start and over the years it thrived and technology advanced. Automated chemistry and haematology analyzers became available to make our work more accurate and throughput greater and more efficient. Computers became an important tool in our work too and by the time I retired in 2001, the laboratory sections were all connected to our own Local Area Network and results could be sent online to doctors’ surgeries.

By now I had already introduced myself to a computer having bought my first in 1983, a Sanyo 555, no hard drive in those days; everything ran off big 5.25 inch floppy discs! Why did I buy it? Well that’s really the subject of another story as at that stage I had become involved in winemaking in a small way and decided I needed a computer to produce newsletters for mail order clients. Needless to say I had to first teach myself word processing and to use Mail Merge to print address labels etc. But as I said, that’s another story.

I joined SeniorNet Nelson in 2003, feeling I had something to offer, tutoring computer subjects to others in my age group and as a result, over the years have assisted on a number of different courses and also been a Principal tutor for some. I served five years on the committee and it was during this time that SNAP (SeniorNet Administration Programme) became available and I suddenly found myself appointed ‘Administration Officer’ for this, charged with getting it up and running. This was successfully accomplished in 2009 and I still have overall responsibility for the smooth continuing operation of SNAP.

While SeniorNet occupies a fair chunk of my time I have other interests too, including trout fishing and photography. My wife and I enjoy the outdoors and native flora as well as our own garden. We have also managed some interesting overseas travel. We have a large family with lots of grandchildren which helps to keep us occupied and young. Long may it continue!
(From Newsletter - December 2015)