Members of the All Arizona School Retirees Association’s Glendale Westside Unit gathered for their monthly meeting at the Glendale Elks Club recently and celebrated the 100th birthday of fellow member, Ruth Elgar.
Ruth was born on April 14, 1912, the same day the Titanic struck an iceberg. Family members feared her mother would go into early labor at the shock of the news, so they decided not to tell her of the ship’s tragedy until after she gave birth to Ruth in the attic of their home in Quincy, Illinois.
She was the first in her family to own a car. In fact, it was a 1929 Pontiac, which she got right after graduating high school. “It didn’t have a rumble seat,” says Ruth, “it had what we used to call a soft top.” Because she was the only one who drove, Ruth played chauffeur to all her family members during those early years.
“These are just a couple of the many stories about my mom’s life that we cherish,” said Ruth’s daughter Katie Elgar of Glendale, who now provides care for her mother. Ruth moved to Arizona in 1984 from New York after she retired as a tax accountant. Katie is also retired, having been a former teacher at Phoenix Union High School.
AASRA Westside Unit’s President and AARP Arizona lead advocacy volunteer Virginia Brant agrees that the story of Ruth’s birth, all those many years ago, is not only unique but should be honored.
“We wanted to celebrate with Ruth, who turned 100 earlier this month, because her birthday marks something very special,” said Brant. “I mean it’s not every day that someone turns 100. It’s awesome and the AASRA Westside Unit members wanted to share in her celebration at our monthly meeting.”
For more information about the AASRA Westside Unit, please call 602-350-2602.
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