April 19th, 2024

Turning 103 no big deal says birthday girl


By Alejandra Pulido-Guzman - Lethbridge Herald on March 23, 2024.

Herald photo by Alejandra Pulido-Guzman Ruth Schumacher gets a hug from friend and Lethbridge Police Services Chief Shahin Mehdizadeh as he congratulates her on her 103rd birthday on Friday at Heritage Lodge.

LETHBRIDGE HERALDapulido@lethbridgeherald.com

The Green Acres Foundation has honoured the oldest resident of Heritage Lodge, Ruth Schumacher, who celebrated an impressive milestone with her family on Friday.

Schumacher celebrated her 103rd birthday surrounded by fellow residents, her daughter Judy Strojwas and her friend Lethbridge Police Service Chief Shahin Mehdizadeh.

And while family and friends made a big deal out of Schumacher’s longevity, she couldn’t understand why.

“Turning 103 is not the greatest; too much fuss,” said Schumacher. “I don’t understand why it is a big deal. I’m not special,”

She said she was embarrassed to be the centre of attention and did not understand why everyone was making a big deal out of her age.

“It’s been good mind you, it’s been good, but it has started to go down now. I have fallen a couple of times within this last year and it’s just not the same anymore,” she said.

Schumacher believes the secret to living long is getting outdoors and enjoying the fresh air, even though she has not had the chance to do that with the change in temperature. Her daughter believes her mom’s secret to a long life is having a great sense of humour.

“Is absolutely amazing to be as good as what she is at 103.” Strojwas said. “She is clear of mind, she still gets out and walks, has a great sense of humour. She doesn’t sit around in a room and do nothing, she’s very active.”

Strojwas said she is blessed to have her mother around for so long, since many children do not have the privilege of having their parents around after so many years.

“I’m very blessed. I think her secret to long life is being active, and she loves to read and do crosswords and just a fantastic sense of humour.”

Schumacher who was embarrassed to be interviewed, transformed into a very happy gal when she saw her friend Mehdizadeh. They hugged and her smile lit up the room. She asked him if he would take her for a bicycle ride, but he told her it would have to wait until the weather was warmer again, and they settled for sitting next to each other while enjoying her birthday lunch.

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