EHT neighborhood celebrates its first 100-year-old resident (VIDEO)

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Laura Stetser/Ted Elias, 80, hugs his mother Helen, 100, during the surprise party Monday, Feb. 3. Laura Stetser/Ted Elias, 80, hugs his mother Helen, 100, during the surprise party Monday, Feb. 3.

EGG HARBOR TOWNSHIP – The residents of the active adult community Village Grande at Little Mill celebrated its first centenarian Monday, Feb. 3 with a surprise party at the clubhouse.

Helen Elias, who officially marked her milestone birthday Sunday, Feb. 2, thanked the crowd of neighbors who had gathered to honor her.

 “Thank you from the bottom of my heart. You have no idea what it feels like when you sit down and you realize you’re 100 years old. I always thought it was just a number, and then it hit me right square in the behind on Sunday,” she said.

“I realized I am 100 years old and I relived my life in about four hours. I cried. I laughed. But I thanked God because he has blessed me with all of you wonderful people to take the time and to show me that you love me as I love you. That’s what life is all about, to love one another.”

Elias lives in the community with her son Ted, 80, who said his mother is in great health for her age.

 “She uses a walker around the house, but that’s about it,” he said proudly.

 Elias used to be a great golfer and is still just a “regular mother,” he said.

Another big family celebration is planned at their home this weekend when her other son, 75, will travel up from North Carolina. 

Laura Stetser/Helen Elias arrives at her surprise 100th birthday party. Laura Stetser/Helen Elias arrives at her surprise 100th birthday party.

Laura Stetser/Neighbors at Village Grande at Little Mill sign Helen Elias’s birthday card. Laura Stetser/Neighbors at Village Grande at Little Mill sign Helen Elias’s birthday card.

Laura Stetser/Helen Elias’s eyes well up with ‘tears of joy’ as her neighbors celebrate her on Monday, Feb. 3. Laura Stetser/Helen Elias’s eyes well up with ‘tears of joy’ as her neighbors celebrate her on Monday, Feb. 3.


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