(MONUMENT, Colo.) — Over 100 people showed up to one U.S. Navy Veteran’s 100th birthday celebration at the Trinity Venue Saturday afternoon.
People of all ages waited their turn in a line that went out the door, to wish Marie West a Happy Birthday. Her influence is exemplified through her accomplishments, including serving in World War II and raising her three daughters alone.
“As far as [Marie West as] a role model, there was nothing you couldn’t do….Just because you’re a woman does not matter,” said West’s daughter, Patsy Janeba.
Marie went on to become the grandma of Monument, working as a caretaker at her daughter’s daycare.
“She showed them the same love that she showed her own grandchildren,” said another of West’s daughters, Connie Clark.
“It’s pretty exciting for someone like Marie to reach 100…Only the best ones do,” said Esther Murray, whose children grew up with Marie at the daycare.
No one is surprised Marie made it this far.
“Because five years ago, she was out playing horseshoes with me,” said West’s grandson, Jim Lasardie, with a laugh.
But Marie can hardly believe it.
“I can’t say anything but unbelievable…All my life I could remember 100-year-old people and I went, I would never get there,” said West.
She says getting to 100 is a blessing.
“I don’t know if there’s a secret…It’s just that I’ve been blessed during my life with things I do…and thank god,” said West with her hands in prayer position to the sky.
Her loved ones say her character is what has brought her this far.
“I’ve never known my mother not to show love,” said Lois Voga, West’s daughter.
“Her attitude is the key to her longevity…Which has been consistent forever… She’s always been the same person,” said Chris Voga, West’s grandson.
But to take her further, Marie is looking up.
When asked if she is hoping for many more years to come, she said, “Well, it depends on the good lord,” said West, again, with her hands in prayer position to the sky.