Laura W. Hollins turned 99 on Wednesday, and to celebrate, her family took her out for a special treat: pancakes.
The 30-year Santa Clarita resident was born in 1923 in Layfette, Louisiana. After her brother, who lived with her in Oxnard, died about 30 years ago, she was taken in by her niece, Stefanie Garrett.
In her youth, Hollins would celebrate her birthday swimming in her family’s pool with friends and family. They would eat her favorites, gumbo and pineapple upside down cake.
Hollins worked as a cook, janitor and housewife in her lifetime.
Although Hollins never had any children of her own, her family considers her as a mother to the whole family.
“She doesn’t have any kids, but she has raised a lot of kids,” said Garrett.
At 99, Hollins does not leave the house much. Her normal days consist of many naps and watching church on TV, as well as game shows and animal documentaries.
To celebrate her birthday, Garrett and her family treated her to an outing for IHOP pancakes.
Hollins may be 99 years old with dementia, but she would not stop reassuring those around her, “I feel fine!”
After living for 99 years, Hollins says her best piece of advice is, “Just be glad to be alive and thank God for it.”