101-year-old shares her secret to long life at birthday party

Posted at 6:39 PM, Jun 11, 2019

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — Thelma Marie Vis said her key to living a long life is keeping busy. She turned 101 years old on Tuesday, and a neighbor threw her a birthday party.

Vis said she's lived in her 55-and-over apartment complex for 21 years which her neighbor, Linda Barber, describes as one big family.

The great great grandmother said so much has changed over her lifetime. She remembers the days she used to ride the trolley through downtown Grand Rapids.

Vis said she misses driving her own car but gave up her license just five years ago in her mid-90s because she didn't feel safe and her son suggested it. However, she said she hasn't let that get in the way of her  maintaining her longevity.

"Just keep busy and work I guess," Vis said.

She added, "As a kid, I always was busy and started working and kept on working. "

Barber said, "She walks like everyday like you wouldn't believe it, up and down the hall, several times a day she's out walking, and that's how she gets all of her exercise. It really is."

"But she is a very strong lady and very independently lady," she described.