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Thursday, March 10th, 2011 - Mrs. Flora Thibodeau: Congratulations on One Hundred and Tenth Birthday

Mrs. Flora Thibodeau

Congratulations on One Hundred and Tenth Birthday

Hon. Rose-May Poirier: Honourable senators, on March 20, 2011, Flora Thibodeau, from Rogersville, New Brunswick, who comes from a family of six children, will celebrate her 110th birthday. Since she turned 100, I have had the privilege and honour of seeing this wonderful woman every year, and she recognizes me as soon as I arrive at her door.

Despite her age, Mrs. Thibodeau is in great shape. She always has a smile on her face, and she loves welcoming visitors to her home and answering questions about topics including history, religion and politics.

[English]

To quote from an article in the Moncton Times & Transcript from February 14, 2011:

She remembers the outbreak of the First World War in 1914, the first time something called an automobile went rumbling down the street in Rogersville, and she recalls the news in 1912 when the Titanic went down in the North Atlantic.

When asked about her first encounter with an automobile, Flora remembers it as if it was yesterday. "I remember it was a Ford, Model T I think it was called," Flora said. "We saw that thing going up the road and we did not know what it was — we all ran over to the road to see what was happening, and it was quite the thing."

Continuing from the Times & Transcript article:

When she was born on March 20, 1901, Sir Wilfrid Laurier was Prime Minister of Canada. William McKinley was the president of the United States, and his vice-president was a young upstart by the name of Theodore Roosevelt, and she was nearly two when the Trappist Monks arrived in her community.

But perhaps what is most remarkable about Flora is that the soon to be 110-year-old still defiantly lives at home, is healthier than many people half her age, can eat whatever she wants, is still relatively mobile, and has impeccable hearing.

[Translation]

When I visited Mrs. Thibodeau last year, she was curious to know whether she was the oldest person in Canada still living at home. Unfortunately, I have yet to find the answer to that question. So, honourable senators, if you have any information on that subject or can point me in the right direction in my search, I would be very grateful.

[English]

Mrs. Thibodeau had 7 children, is a grandmother to 17, is a great-grandmother to 27 and a great-great-grandmother to 5.

The article in the Times & Transcript continues:

Flora says that when you're 109 years old, life becomes a day-by-day process and that's exactly how she plans on taking it from here-on out.

She's thankful for her health, for her family, and for being able to live out her years in the comfort of her immaculately kept Rogersville bungalow, sitting in her comfy easy chair and listening to the radio.

Flora was a dedicated career woman, working hard to put food on the table. Aside from being a schoolteacher for six years, Flora was also the first woman manager of the local Caisse Populaire branch and a telephone operator. She also worked at the local Co-op location for many years.

[Translation]

In conclusion, Flora Thibodeau spent her life in the community of Rogersville. On March 20, she will celebrate her 110th birthday, a record that makes her the oldest Acadian in the province. I invite all honourable senators to wish Mrs. Thibodeau a happy birthday.

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