DC’s oldest resident celebrates her 107th birthday

The district’s oldest living resident celebrated her birthday at her church on Thursday, surrounded by loved ones.

Miss Willie Mae Avery turned 107 today and her relatives and the city celebrated her at the Walker Memorial Baptist Church.

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When asked about her secret to life, Avery replied, “Work hard and just do lots of good things for the lord after I retire.”

“I’m just so happy,” she said. “I don’t have many words to say.”

The DC Department of Aging and Community Living honored Avery with a gold DC Centenarians medal, and Mayor Muriel Bowser sent a letter and certificate for her special day.

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“As mayor of Washington DC, I am so pleased to congratulate Ms. Willie Mae Avery on the wonderful occasion of your 107th birthday,” the letter read. “Mrs. Avery, whether your steadfast devotion to your ward 4 neighbors through extended residency or your spiritual donation to your faith through membership of the Walker Memorial Baptist Church near the historic U Street Corridor, you have long been known as an extraordinary pillar of your community to all who have had the pleasure of knowing and loving you.”

Avery was honored by the city in February when she received an official Black History Month proclamation thanking her for all she’s done to make DC what it is today.

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