Calabash woman celebrates 100th birthday socially distanced with honks and sirens


CALABASH, NC (WWAY) — It did not rain on Rita Conlon’s 100th birthday parade on Sunday afternoon.

Well, it did rain. But that did not stop many of her friends, Brunswick County Sheriff’s Deputies and Calabash Firefighters from coming out to help her celebrate.

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“I never expected such a delightful party,” Conlon said. “I loved all of it!”

Conlon’s daughter organized the drive-by birthday bash in Saltaire Village.

WWAY’s Sydney Bouchelle asked Conlon if this was her best birthday party ever.

She did not skip a beat.

“Absolutely. No question,” Conlon said.

She gave her secret to living a long life, even though she doesn’t feel very old.

“I have a really positive outlook on life and I think that really helps,” she said. “I do not feel 100! I am still having a very nice life.”

And she shared some words of wisdom.

“Kindness is one trait that I think is very important,” she said. “Be considerate of your friends and try to keep productive if you can, that helps.”

Conlon says she looks forward to spending more time with her friends and socializing when things get back to normal.

Put very simply, she says she is grateful for 100 years and her birthday celebration.

“I am just delighted to see so many people and so many dear friends,” Conlon said. “I appreciate their coming out to celebrate with me and I love them all!”

From all of us at WWAY, Happy Birthday Rita! And may you have many more!