Town’s oldest resident turns 106 today | DrumhellerMail
Last updateTue, 23 Jul 2024 1pm

Town’s oldest resident turns 106 today


    For some among the younger generation, it’s hard for them to imagine their 30th birthday.  For the older generation it is difficult to remember their 40th.

    Dora Ropchan has no trouble telling people her 106th birthday is this Thursday.
    The centenarian … and then some… is celebrating her birthday on January 27.  She is a long time resident of Drumheller and still has a girlish twinkle in her eye.
    Dora was born in Romania in 1905 and immigrated to Canada in 1910.
    In 1923 she married her husband and they raised three children, Winnie and John, who have since passed away, and Annie who now resides in BC. They kept a farm with a variety of livestock, but eventually the couple settled in Midland, and Dora kept a great garden. Peter passed away in 1969.
    Dora made the Sunshine Lodge her home in 1992, and was a fixture making visits memorable for family, and other guests. She continued with her intricate crochet work, even after the age of 100.
    In 2005, MLA Shirley McClellan awarded her with a gold commemorative medal, reserved for those who turned 100 with the province.
    Dora celebrated her 103 birthday at the Sunshine Lodge, before moving to the  Continuing Care in Drumheller.
    Long time friend Myrtle Wilson said family members are coming to celebrate with Dora on Thursday afternoon.
    “I’ve taken care of her for 30 years,” said Wilson. “ It was her son who asked us take care of her before he died, and I’ve been doing it.”
    Wilson said while Dora can get a little “ornery” at times, that the two have gotten along. At Dora’s age, she has earned that right
    “When you are 106 you can do what, say what you want, eat what you want,” laughs Wilson, adding that she is one person that can put Dora ‘back in her place.”
    She gets along well at the Continuing Care Unit at the Drumheller Health Centre. While Dora often resorts to her mother tongue to communicate, she has no trouble teasing staff members, and bringing out smiles. She takes delight in her stash of Peak Freans in her room.
    Wilson said they expect Dora’s daughter Annie to attend her birthday, as well as Dora’s son-in-law on Thursday.

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