Elizabeth Viens celebrated her 100th birthday, complete with a party hat reading “eternal youth” and a birthday sash. Miranda Fatur Black Press Media

‘It just happened’: B.C. woman celebrates her 100th birthday

While sporting a party hat reading ‘eternal youth,’ Elizabeth Viens said there’s no trick to living a long life

According to Langley senior Elizabeth Viens, turning 100-years-old is no big deal.

“It just happened I guess,” she said of her centennial birthday.

Viens turned 100 on Jan. 17, and the retirement home she resides in – Chartwell Langley Gardens – threw a birthday bash on Thursday, Jan. 31, complete with entertainment, beverages, cake, and decor.

“It’s been so good the last while, but it’s been awful at the same time,” said Viens of her old age.

At 100, she’s quite healthy, despite a few earlier “broken bones, and a broken hip.”

But according to Viens, there’s no secret to living a long life.

“I’m not one to give any advice,” she laughed.

Born in Scotland, Viens explained that her large family moved to the Canadian prairies when she was only nine.

“I’ve spent 90 years in Canada. I moved here when I was nine years old. We have a big family, so we thought it was a better place to be. We scattered all across Canada.”

Throughout her life, Viens had no children of her own, and married “late in life” to her husband George, who passed away in 2007.

She met George at a dance mixer in Nanaimo, when he asked her for a dance.

“He was known around there anyways, and his wife had died a few months before that,” Viens explained.

George worked at a steel plant, and the couple married when Viens was 40.

Twelve years of Viens’ life was spent in Nanaimo on Vancouver Island, and two years ago she moved to the Lower Mainland to be closer to her sister.

Viens explained she “never got much of an education,” so in her working years, she took up jobs “all over the place,” doing things like housekeeping and babysitting.

“We didn’t have the jobs they have now,” she added.

In her free time, Viens said she kept busy with hobbies.

“I filled my life with lots of hobbies. My husband did the same. Knitting cushions, bowling, rollerskating, all the exercises.”

The Scottish senior had a passion for travelling, and said she went back to Scotland many times, in addition to new places.

“I went on a round trip with a girlfriend. We went to Australia, to Sydney. We worked there for six months, then moved on to other places. I went back to Scotland, and across Europe, and to France.”

Some of her favourite memories throughout her long life have been “the get-togethers.”

While wearing her birthday hat, Viens said “I don’t think I deserve all this,” and explained she had a family birthday party earlier in the month with many relatives.

And good health seems to run in Viens’ family, as she explained both her sister and mother lived until they were 90.

Just Posted

It happened this week in Cranbrook: 1912

Aug. 11 - 17: Compiled by Dave Humphrey from the newspapers at the Cranbrook History Centre and Archives

Kootenay Orienteering Championships coming to Kimberley, Cranbrook

The championships take place from September 6 to 8, 2019.

Local rowing club comes up big at Nelson Sprints Regatta

The Rockies Rowing Club saw multiple members have positive results at the annual regatta

City gets $100K grant for improving National Disaster Mitigation Program

The City of Cranbrook successfully applied for and has been awarded a… Continue reading

Family on way to a wedding when girl, 4, killed in crash near Creston

The Alberta family was travelling through B.C. for a wedding when their RV was in a serious collision

QUIZ: How much do you remember about Woodstock?

Weekend music festival in Bethel, New York, was held 50 years ago

U16 B.C. fastpitch team named national champs

Girls went undefeated at national tournament in Calgary

Advocates ‘internationalize’ the fight to free Raif Badawi from Saudi prison

Raif Badawi was arrested on June 17, 2012, and was later sentenced to 1,000 lashes and 10 years in jail for his online criticism of Saudi clerics

Canadian entrepreneurs turning beer byproduct into bread, cookies and profits

Some breweries turn to entrepreneurs looking to turn spent grain into treats for people and their pets

Canada ‘disappointed’ terror suspect’s British citizenship revoked

Jack Letts, who was dubbed “Jihadi Jack” by the U.K. media, has been detained in a Kurdish prison for about two years

Chrystia Freeland condemns violence in Hong Kong, backs right to peaceful assembly

There have been months of protests in the semi-autonomous region

Most Read