Chicago's centenarians celebrate living 100 years

CHICAGO (WLS) -- You could have been a special guest at this party on the South Side, but there is one requirement, you must be at least 100 years old to get the red carpet treatment.

"I'll be 103 in September, God willing," said Thelma Maryann Lloyd, one of the party-goers who enjoyed lunch, dancing and entertainment at the special gathering.

"Doing what you're supposed to do," Lloyd said when asked what's the secret to living so long, "eat right, treat people right, and keeping your mind and your body active."

Community activist Andrew Holmes held the Centenarian Celebration as a way to honor the elderly, especially those who have hit the century mark. He has held the 100-plus party for six years, and Friday 17 centenarians attended the event at the Salvation Army in Englewood, including one man who will soon be 112 years old.

Along with the special guests, several young people also attended the event, giving the younger generation a chance to learn from the older one.

"We're just letting them show others how to live," Holmes said. "We have a trillion billion dollars worth of knowledge, nothing but knowledge."

And the guests did feel special. "I'm great. I feel like a celebrity," Lloyd said.

"What we're doing is celebrating life," Holmes added.
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