Gladys L. Cole, a lifelong resident of Watertown, is celebrating her 111th birthday today.
A resident of Samaritan Keep Home, she was born here on Feb. 13, 1903, a daughter of Frank and Florence Lyon. She attended Watertown public schools and worked for a time at Toohey silk mills and Shaughnessy knitting mills.
She married John N. Cole on Nov. 12, 1927. Mr. Cole, a machinist at New York Air Brake Co. for 45 years, died Nov. 22, 1990, at 84. They had five children.
Mr. and Mrs. Cole were active for years at the North Side Improvement League, helping with dinners, bingo and other events.
Mrs. Cole is a past president of North Side Improvement League Auxiliary, Barben-Jones Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 1400 Auxiliary, Mohawk Adirondack Council of the VFW and the Jefferson County Home Auxiliary. She also is a past noble grand of Garland Rebekah Lodge and attended the Church of the Redeemer until it closed.
Birthday wishes can be sent to her at Room 204, Samaritan Keep Home, 133 Pratt St., Watertown, NY 13601.
In 2009, Mrs. Cole, while living alone on West Division Street, where she was born and raised, told the Times that she had no advice for living a long life, except, she joked, just being miserable.
The oldest living American is Jeralean Talley, 114, of Inkster, Mich.