Kay Elston celebrates a century

Village of Colonie resident's milestone marked by dignitaries

Reaching the age of 100 is quite the milestone, especially when you will be receiving a plaque commemorating the moment from the president of the United States, a United States senator and the mayor of the town you lived in.

Kay Elston, a mother of three and a widow since 1972, turned 100 years old on Tuesday, Sept. 14. At her surprise birthday party the Sunday before, she couldn't be happier to be surrounded by nearly 40 members of her family spanning at least two generations at the Our Lady of Mercy Life Center in Guilderland.

I don't care if I live after 100 because I've enjoyed this birthday so much, she said. "There must be 42 people here, I can't believe it. It is a wonderful, wonderful surprise."

Elston has lived in the Village of Colonie since 1950, recalling stories with her daughter-in-law, Evelyn, about breaking her heels on the cobblestone streets when they were still there in Albany or playing cards at the Colonie Senior Center.

She thanked her granddaughter Donna Miller for putting the surprise party together as tears of joy filled her eyes.

Talk to anyone who has met Elston and they will say she still has all of her facilities and is in good health, which is something she herself is surprised by.

"It's wonderful that I'm so healthy," she said. "It's surprising. I can't believe it."

She was able to live on her own for 99 years of her life, but six months ago she broke her shoulder, which landed her in Our Lady of Mercy.

"Now I'm staying here for good," she said. "It's not that I enjoy it so much, I just can't do anything at home. When I was home, I just sat in the chair because I couldn't do anything. It's a good thing that I'm here. It's rather enjoyable."

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