Carmel woman celebrates 100th birthday


What is it like to be born before the invention of ballpoint pens, hearing aids, frozen foods, aerosol sprays, suntan lotion, television, jet engines and nuclear power?

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Elaine Braden knows, as the Carmel resident celebrated her 100th birthday on April 10.

The Baltimore native, who has eight grandchildren and 15 great-grandchildren, answered the following questions about becoming a centenarian:

You’ve done a lot of traveling through the years. Do you have a favorite destination?

Oh, I have lots of favorites. We loved to make day trips into Mexico when (my husband) Bill was assigned to military duties in El Paso. Visits to my son (Jay) and his family in Europe while Jay was stationed there were always fun. Similarly, visits to my daughter (Ellen) and her family in California while she and her Marine husband Tom were stationed were also fun. Annual trips to Florida for the winter were great because of the friends we met there. A few years ago, Jay and Ellen arranged a cross-Canada-by-train adventure for the three of us that was just amazing.

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Elaine Braden in her younger days.

What is it like to be 100?

In many ways it is no different than being 99. But while I am amazed to have made it so far, I am sad that my wonderful husband Bill is not here to share the joy (Bill died in 2003).

Any advice for those of us who have not reached triple digits?

Oh, sure. Take care of your health, keep a sense of humor and count your blessings.