Louisiana’s oldest resident turns 111 years old; family finds unique way to celebrate birthday

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(WDSU)

Louisiana’s oldest resident turns 111 years old; family finds unique way to celebrate birthday

NEW ORLEANS, La. (WDSU) — Louisiana’s oldest resident celebrated a milestone Wednesday. Odile Washington turned 111 years old!

“It’s a blessing to know my relative has become 111 years old. That’s a blessing. When I tell that to people they say ‘what!’ They can’t believe it,” said Deanne Clark Thomas.

Washington’s family gathered outside the Belle Vie Living Center in Gretna. Sheriff Joe Lopinto from the Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office was also there to celebrate her special day.

Everyone said they were overjoyed Washington reached this milestone, yet they were sad because they couldn’t embrace her like they wanted to due to COVID-19 restrictions.

“We can’t go in because she’s in a nursing home. We can’t touch her, but just have to feel with our hearts and we know that she loves us and we love her, too,” Thomas said.

Washington stayed inside the nursing home, while family and friends stayed outside. Even though they were separated by glass doors and windows, the family said they’re blessed she reached 111 years old; healthy, alert, filled with so much life, love, fashion and joy.

“We don’t know how many more, but 111 is kind of an outstanding number. There are not too many people who cross over the 110 numbers. So, we’re very happy about that,” said her brother Rev. Louis Clark.

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