105 Years Young: McDowell Place resident celebrates 105th birthday (Video)

Published 3:02 pm Thursday, March 14, 2024

McDowell Place of Danville resident Mary Lou White celebrated her 105th birthday on March 12. She got a special present: 105 birthday cards.

“105 years is quite a milestone,” said McDowell Place Activity Manager Gina Scott. “We put out on Facebook that ‘hey, wouldn’t it be great to get 105 cards for your birthday?’ People came through and we got 105. The Toliver Admirals Academy after-school program all made cards and a banner. There are cards from Eastern Kentucky, Georgia, Florida, all over.”

White has been a resident of McDowell Place for six years and inspires the staff every day.

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“We are very grateful for Mary Lou,” Scott said. “She is a real treasure. We are so happy that she is here with us.”

White was born in Missouri and graduated from Western Kentucky University in 1940. Like her mother, White had a career as a sixth-grade teacher for more than 25 years. 

“I’m an old school teacher, I never turn down the chance to talk,” White said. “105 feels just fine, I feel about the same as I did yesterday. Everybody is so good to me here. They let me do what I want to do and I do what I please.”

Mary Lou White may be 105 but that won’t be slowing her down.

“I’ll join everything and go to everything,” White said. “I love living here. It is a good place. They will spoil you rotten and I let them.”

Her advice to young people is to stay out of trouble.

“I taught school for 30 years. You gotta behave and go over the rules,” White said. “If you do what they say you will never get in trouble. Don’t do things that will make you considered a bad apple.”