By Beth David, Editor
Delima “Del” Genard still flashes a huge smile when she sees her friends and many relatives. She still walks around the complex regularly for exercise, plays cards and keeps in touch with her children and grandchildren. Yup, she’s still going strong at 103 years old.
We first met Del in 2018 when she turned 100. She said then that she had no secret to her long life, and she’s sticking with that this year at 103. Everyone suspects, though, that the many visits she receives from family members help to keep her young at heart.
While waiting for her to arrive at her surprise birthday party on Wednesday, 8/18, Del’s granddaughter Katie Trahan just happened to show up with her son Hudson. Ms. Trahan said she had no idea there was a party for her grandmother. The family had already had a celebration for her.
“We just happened to come by for a visit,” said Ms. Trahan.
Last year, due to the pandemic, friends and family held a parade for Del, said Isabel Sousa, who organized this year’s party. She said she was happy to be able to have a real party. She set up tables outside her apartment at Presidential Terrace where about 20 people showed up to wish the popular centenarian well, enjoy some cake and soda, and good company.
Her daughter Priscilla Chasse escorted her to the party, walking alongside Del as she walked across the complex.
“I don’t do anything different,” said Del when asked to share advice on living a long and happy life. “I just live my life.”
She likes watching TV and playing cards.
“My grandchildren come over,” she said.
“She keeps right on going,” said Priscilla. “She’s like the Energizer Bunny. She just keeps moving.
Del still does her own grocery shopping, although someone drives her, said Ms. Sousa, noting that Del gets visitors every day.
Her secret probably isn’t diet, either, as her favorite food is Bacon.
“He’s fantastic,” said Maria Branco, who has known Del for 10 years. “She’s so nice. Everybody likes her. I like her a lot.”
Ms. Branco said they used to go to lunch on a regular basis, but the pandemic put that to a stop. She’s hoping they will start their regular trips soon.
“God bless her. She’s terrific,” said Dona DesRoches. “I know I’m not going to make it to that age.”
When Del said she liked tea and coffee, Mr. DesRoches wondered if there was something added to that tea.
“I see her walk all around (the complex),” he said.
“This is great,” said Del’s great grandson Hudson. “I didn’t expect to have cake today.”
He said he walks with Del when she “does her laps,” and just hangs out in the apartment with her.
In our story in 2018, we wrote: Apparently, there is usually another great- or great-great grandchild on the way at any given time.”Apparently, there is usually another great- or great-great grandchild on the way at any given time.”
And indeed that is true. Del’s daughter Florence was at the hospital with her daughter, waiting to welcome another great grandchild of Del’s.
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