A century of memories
October 20, 2011
Mary Lethbridge has seen the invention of the pop-up toaster, the television and the automatic washing machine.
On Tuesday, Mary celebrated her 100th birthday surrounded by family and friends at Merrill Gardens in Gardnerville.
“I feel pretty good, and flattered by all the lovely people around me,” she said. “The good Lord has taken care of me.”
Born Oct. 18, 1911, in Colombus, Kan., Mary was the youngest of eight children.
In 1948, she married her husband George, and they had one son Skip. She worked as an accountant until she was 75 years old.
“It’s quite something,” Skip said. “She’s the third out of eight kids to reach her 100th birthday. It’s pretty amazing.”
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As a teenager, Mary remembers her first car ride. It was in an Oldsmobile REO.
“My girlfriend and I got to ride in the back. It was so fabulous,” she said with a smile.
Mary was an adult by the time television was invented. And although she couldn’t remember the first show she watched, she remembered she couldn’t keep her eyes off of it.
“We couldn’t get away from it,” she said. “We had to sit and watch and watch and watch.”
Mary’s only grandchild, Jim Lethbridge, remembers the many trips his family would make to visit his grandparents in California.
“It’s amazing, not just that she’s turning 100, but that she’s in such good shape,” Jim said. “She was built for longevity.”
Mary said she keeps her mind busy by reading her Bible daily and doing crossword puzzles.
“I’m very grateful I have such a great mind,” she said. “I think I’ve pretty much accomplished everything I wanted to do. I’ve had a very good life.”