Topeka woman celebrates 100th birthday with family, despite coronavirus pandemic

Local News

TOPEKA, Kan. (KSNT) – The family of Vivian Glessner worried the coronavirus would halt their plans of celebrating Glessner’s 100th birthday.

However, with her family by her side and a sparkling pink tiara on her head, she was able to do so on Sunday.

“I was scared to death that she was going to be by herself on her 100th birthday,” said Callie Ballenger, Glessner’s granddaughter. “I had told my dad, I’m like ‘I don’t care what she does or what people say, I’m taking her somewhere,'” Ballenger said with a laugh.

Glessner was born in Berryton in 1920 and spent her whole life in the Topeka-area. She married and had two children, three grandchildren, and four great-grandchildren.

Glessner worked at Stormont Vail Health as a nurse for about 20 years and loved watching her favorite team, the Kansas City Royals.

“We usually went to a Royals game every year. She would win tickets on the TV and one time we got to go to the Royals game and we sat in special seats, and we got a gift pack,” Ballenger said. “That was probably the best memory is going to Royals games with her.”

With the help of Oak Creek Senior Living staff, Glessner was able to safely spend the day with her family, something they will cherish forever.

“I’m just happy that we got to celebrate and that she’s still here,” Ballenger said. “A lot of people don’t have their grandma for 41 years like I have, and hope to have her for many more.”

Glessner’s family hopes to be able to celebrate with her for her 101st, 102nd, and many more birthdays after that.

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