POSITIVELY JAX: Nassau County woman celebrates turning 100 with a big party

Marilyn Gandenberger celebrates turning 100 with family and friends Monday, Oct 17, 2022 (NCCOA)

FERNANDINA BEACH, Fla. – The Janice Ancrum Senior Life Center held quite the celebration on Monday, one fit for a woman turning 100-years-old. Marilyn Gandenberger reached the milestone surrounded by family and friends.

The staff at the Nassau County Council on Aging shared the celebration with us, and it included a birthday cake, her friend singing a song by Elvis (her favorite artist), and lots of hugs.

People who know Marilyn are impressed with her mental acuity when she plays games requiring knowledge, reasoning skill and recall. She often outperforms others who are decades younger than her.

Gandenberger is a bridge and card player for over 75 years and maintains her competitive edge, according to her friends.

Marilyn Gandenberger plays bridge at the Janice Ancrum Senior Life Center. Marilyn turned 100-years-old. (NCCOA)

Fiercely independent Marilyn insists on driving herself to and from the Janice Ancrum Senior Life Center. “I hope I have the good sense to know when I should no longer be driving, but I haven’t reached that point yet,” she says.

She attends the Life Center four days a week to participate in morning activities. “I like to do things. I like to be busy,” Marilyn said.

Staying active has been integral throughout Marilyn’s life. In the mid-1940s, she worked as an executive secretary for DuPont in the Empire State Building in New York City, and then worked as a corporate secretary and board member for her husband’s publishing company for more than 50 years.

Marilyn Gandenberger in 1945 at age 23 (NCCOA)

Marilyn was born in Teaneck, New Jersey in 1922, and spent 50 years there. She met her husband Robert at a dance in 1943, and they were married in 1946. They enjoyed 68 years of wedded life before he passed away in 2014. The couple lived in Ormond Beach, Jacksonville and Pendleton, South Carolina before moving to Fernandina Beach in 2003. They had four children. Marilyn has three grandchildren, eight great-grandchildren and one great-great-grandchild.

Everyone at News4JAX, Channel 4, wants to wish Marilyn Gandenberger the happiest 100th birthday, and many more!


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