EUGENE, Ore. -- Four women, all over 100 years old, are living together at Churchill Estates retirement community in Eugene.
When asked how she has stayed healthy for more than a century, Elsie Dean, 101, said, “I just lived.”
Dean said the world has changed a lot since her childhood in west Texas. She recalled the days when phones were wall-mounted fixtures. Dean had a few words of wisdom about how she reached her age.
“Don't drink alcoholic beverages, and don't speed in cars,” said Dean.
She added that if you want to grow old, listen to your mother’s advice.
For Ruby Purvis, 101, living more than a century meant some of the details of her life have become hazy.
“I’ve been married twice, and I don’t remember the names of them,” she said.
However, she said that the three sons she raised in Missouri will never leave her mind.
“I just have one left,” said Purvis, as she began to cry.
Mildred Finch, 102, said her daughter is the reason she is still healthy.
“When I got pregnant, I never smoked again,” said Finch as she pointed to her daughter sitting across the room. “That girl right there made me quit smoking.”
Austrian born Hilda Gepson, 104, said she has a message for the youth of the world.
“Be good to yourself,” she said, “and don’t hold grudges of anger.”
A spokeswoman for Churchill Estates said the average age of tenants at the facility is around 86 years old. According to the American Human Development Project, the average Oregonian lives to 79.