Celebrating More Than a Century of Life

WAYMART, Pa. -- On April 26, 1911, William Howard Taft was president, and the television was years away from being invented. It's also the day Jane Carpenter was born.

"When she was born, she was one of twins, and her twin was stillborn, and they didn't know if she would make it through the night even," said stepdaughter Ruth Skinner.

If you haven't done the math yet, Jane is celebrating her 108th birthday with family and friends at Wayne Woodlands Manor in Waymart. Four of her five stepchildren traveled in for the big day.

"She was my mother's best friend, and so growing up, we knew her as Aunt Jane, and it was funny because one day my mother said to her, 'Aunt Jane, if I die first, I want you to marry Emerson and raise my children," Skinner recalled.

While 108 is quite the feat of its own, Wayne Woodlands says it's actually the oldest resident they've ever had.

"We all just realized this year that she was the oldest resident we've ever had here, so we are all celebrating it. It's quite the accomplishment. I mean, not everyone lives that long," said assistant activities director Debbie Bishop.

Representatives from the offices of State Representative Jonathan Fritz and State Senator Lisa Baker presented Jane with certificates for her accomplishment.

And although Jane doesn't talk very much anymore, those who know her say she is one of the most generous people they know.

"Kind to everybody, always going up and down the halls, hugging and kissing everyone, just a very sweet lady," Bishop said.

"She never thinks of herself, just always other people. And I've never seen her have a mean word in her mouth for anybody. I've never seen her angry. I've never seen her be rude to anyone," Skinner said. "She's very special."

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