Gladys Bridges had simple plans for celebrating her 100th birthday on Monday — cake and thanking God for being able to make it to the milestone.
Bridges, who was born on Dec. 7, 1920, turned 100.
Her family held a drive-by birthday celebration for her on Dec. 5. Family and friends lined up at Eastside School and drove over to Wallace Road where Bridges sat wearing a crown and waving at the cars.
"Living right," Bridges said to how she has lived for so long. "God has been good to me."
Bridges and her daughter Maggie Bridges Peterkin celebrated her big day together by having cake and ice cream.
"And I might ride her around for a little while," Peterkin said.
Peterkin added she felt good about her mother turning 100.
"I feel like she has been a blessing to her children and to me," Peterkin said. "I feel like she is more active than I am. She does better than I do sometimes. She is a beautiful lady and I love her very much. We stick together like husband and wife."
Bridges' husband died in 1988 while Peterkin's husband died in 1970.
One of the keys to Bridges' longevity is walking. A few years ago, she would walk from her home to Lake Paul Wallace, walk across it to Beauty Spot Road, and return home. She did that for about six years for about three times a week.
It wasn't health issues that stopped Bridges but a safety one after someone attempted to rob her.
"But God was with me and he didn't touch me."
Born in Wallace, she is the daughter of the late Willie and Mary Ann Thomas Alford.
Her husband was the late Clarence Bridges Sr.
They have three children — Clarence Bridges Jr. of Spartanburg, Maggie Bridges Peterkin of Bennettsville, and Delories Bridges Henderson of Richmond, Va.
Bridges still does her own housework and cooking. She used to do outside work.
She said she allowed Jesus into her life at an early age. Bridges is a member of Shiloh Baptist Church, where she is the oldest member.
Reading is a hobby of hers. She reads five books every morning and the Bible.
Her favorite book is the Bible and her favorite scriptures are Psalms 91 and 23.
Due to Covid-19, Bridges has stayed home. She has a tablet that she uses.
Mrs. Peterkin noted her mother knows how to use the tablet quite well.
"It allows me to get preaching on Sunday," Bridges said.
She is in good health and attributes it to eating right and taking a lot of vitamins. Her only health problem is acid reflux and blood pressure.
"God has been good to me," she said.
Her advice to others is to "just live humble and love everybody and treat everybody the same.
Bridges said she knows this year has been challenging for many and she gave God the glory.
"I made it," she said. "I just ask God to keep me safe and comfort me."