The “Man With 1,000 Grandchildren.” Selfless Australian Leaves A Beautiful Legacy.

We’ve told you before about the benefits of the young and old sharing the same environment. There was the story about a learning center in Seattle which functioned as both a nursing home and an elementary school, and there was the time we told you about a nursing home that also served as a dorm for college students.

Now we are seeing once again how much young people and seniors have to offer one another… with the story of Poppy Wallace!

Poppy Wallace– whose real name is Ross– is the resident grandpa at Whitsunday Anglican School in Queensland, Australia. That’s right. There’s no “class pet” at this school. It’s a class grandpa!


It all started when Ross Wallace retired. “I’d finished work and I happened to be talking to a friend, and I said to her, ‘I’m retired, I don’t know what I’m going to do, I don’t have any grandchildren,'” Ross explained, “She said ‘Well, why don’t you come to Whitsunday School and be the poppy there?'”

At first, Ross wasn’t so sure about taking on that commitment.

“I kept making excuses for the whole year and then in 2002, she rang and said ‘School starts tomorrow and I’m picking you up’ and I’ve been here ever since.” That was 15 years ago! Now, the beloved Poppy Wallace has grandfathered 1,000 students.


Poppy Wallace isn’t just grandfather to little children– even the older students appreciating having a granddad around to turn to! It’s good for students of all ages to regularly interact with an elderly person, and it’s great for Poppy Wallace, too.

To see the full extent of his beautiful legacy check out the video below and share with a friend!

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