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Arlington's Anna Lockhart to celebrate 105th birthday
ARLINGTON — She was born in Ireland on Jan. 28, 1906, and this year Anna Lockhart will celebrate her 105th birthday at the Cascade Valley Senior Living Center in Arlington.
Lockhart made the voyage from County Cork to Ellis Island when she was in her mid-20s, to join her siblings who had moved to New York. That was where she met and married her husband in her early 30s, and where she started working as a nurse, in the maternity ward of the Lennox Hill Hospital.
“She loves children,” said Lockhart’s daughter, Maureen DePuy, who lives in Marysville. “She was still working there when I was born. She was 40 years old when she had me.”
DePuy recalled her mother’s lifelong career of service to others, which has included working in nursing homes and with shut-ins, as well as taking care of the sick and the blind.
“She’s done lots of volunteer work in her life,” DePuy said. “She’s a very devout Catholic.”
Both Lockhart and her husband were 62 years old when he died in 1971, after which Lockhart settled down in Colorado Springs where she looked after elderly people who were often younger than she was, until a decade ago.
“She was working in nursing homes, four and five days a week, until she was 95,” Depuy said. “I think it helps that she’s always stayed active, mentally and physically. I’ve always admired her enthusiastic attitude.”
Although DePuy’s brother died at the age of 54, Lockhart still has two grandsons and eight great-grandchildren by DePuy. Lockhart lived on her own in Arlington until the age of 101, when she moved to the Cascade Valley Senior Living Center. She remained so actively involved in the Immaculate Conception Church in Arlington that Father Jim Dalton named her the “official matriarch” of the church a few years ago. Dalton has dressed in a tuxedo and a top hat to attend Lockhart’s previous post-centennial birthday parties.
“The great thing about Anna is that she always talks to everyone,” Dalton said. “There’s not a person she’s talked to who hasn’t become her friend.”
“She’s very outgoing and positive,” DePuy agreed. “She lives in color. She might not hear very well, but she still loves socializing.”
When Lockhart turned 100 years old, DePuy and her husband flew all her friends up from Colorado, not realizing that she would have so many more birthdays.
“She’s probably in better health than me,” DePuy laughed. “She still walks in her walker, and she always enjoys being with friends. She just loves to smile.”