Zona Bird is 100 years young

Zona was also thrilled to have her only granddaughter Christy attend her birthday party at the New Horizons Care Center along with her two great-grandchildren, Toni and Anthony. Patti Carpenter photo

Zona was also thrilled to have her only granddaughter Christy attend her birthday party at the New Horizons Care Center along with her two great-grandchildren, Toni and Anthony.
Patti Carpenter photo

New Horizons Care Center resident Zona Bird turned 100 years old this week and celebrated with friends and family at a party that was held in her honor on Saturday at the care center.

“If I have to be 100, I’m gonna do it up right,” the energetic centenarian said.

Bird was born in Lovell on Aug. 24, 1913. She lived in Lovell until the early 30s, when she met Everett Bird of Greybull after his sister married her brother. Later, the two married and the union lasted for more than 60 years.

Everett was a career military man, ultimately serving 28 years in the U.S. Air Force. As a result of his military career, the two traveled extensively, living in Hawaii, England, France and other places around the world. Eventually, when Everett retired from military service, the couple moved to Sonoma, Calif., where they lived happily for many years.

The couple enjoyed dancing and playing golf together. They lived an active life for most of their marriage.

Eventually, the couple moved to the New Horizons Care Center where Everett was able to receive the extensive nursing care that he needed in his elder years, while Zona lived nearby in the assisted living section of the center. When Everett died, Zona continued living at the care center and still lives, for the most part, in the assisted living section. She has lived at the center for about five years and is well liked by staff and the other residents.

The party was well attended by family and friends, including Zona’s only son , Dusten, and his wife, Cynthia, of Billings. Zona was also thrilled to have her only granddaughter Christy attend and her two great-grandchildren Toni and Anthony, also of Billings, at the party. Numerous other extended family members attended as well.

A beautiful tiered birthday cake, including edible reproductions of photos from Zona’s life, was the centerpiece of the occasion.

She said the cake was not only beautiful but tasted good, too. The cake was custom made for Zona by Shannon Mayes of Lovell. Mayes also made and supplied interesting balloon decorations for the party.

When asked how it felt to be 100 years old, Zona said, “It feels the same as 99, but to see all of these people here and to have them celebrate with me makes me feel young again.”

by Patti Carpenter

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