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Cape Coral woman celebrates 102nd birthday

By Staff | Jun 14, 2011

Firefighters made an appearance at Juniper Village Monday afternoon to bring a little laughter to the residents in case a fire needed to be put out while Lorena Schmidt blew out 102 candles in celebration of her birthday.
Rick Morgan from Rescue One and firefighter Kerry Loso brought their extinguisher into the birthday party while wishing Lorena a happy birthday — all in good fun.
“I was overwhelmed,” she said about the firefighters showing up. “That was quite a cake.”
Schmidt moved to Cape Coral 45 years ago from Dunkirk, New York where she taught mostly second graders for 37 years.
When she arrived in Cape Coral she taught at Cape Elementary School from 1967-1977.
She said she knew she wanted to become a teacher when she was 4 years old.
“I wish I could see all my kids lined up from all those years,” Schmidt said, smiling.
Last month a dream came true for Lorena after members of Rolling Thunder took her out on her very first motorcycle ride around the block near Juniper Village. After they went around the block, she said she wanted to continue on to St. Pete because it was a beautiful ride.
She became an honorable member of Rolling Thunder on May 21.
“Now anytime I need something, I call my gang,” Schmidt said, laughing again.
An edible picture of her sitting in the motorcycle side car wearing sunglasses and a Rolling Thunder T-shirt, along with a tattoo around her arm was in the middle of her cake that had all 102 candles lit for her to blow out.
She has gone by the motto “keep a song in your heart, a smile on your lips and joy in your eyes” all these years.
Schmidt reflected on her past years and could not believe how fast her 70s, 80s and 90s went and now, the first couple of years of a century plus. She said all those years went by because of the sunrises and sunsets.
Some of her fondest memories include a trip to Niagara Falls in 1938 when it was completely frozen over for the first and only time, along with being the grand marshal of the Mickey Mouse parade for her 80th birthday.
Alicia Schmidt said her mother is an incredible lady who is loved by everyone.
“She has a healthy mind and body and each day is a blessing,” she said.
Lorena planned to celebrate her birthday by going out to dinner with her daughter Monday night.
Daisy Godbee, activities director at Juniper Village said Lorena is an amazing, incredible woman.
“There isn’t anything this woman can’t do,” she said. “She is an inspiration.”
For Lorena’s 100th birthday party, Godbee said she asked everyone to bring in canned food to be donated to the Caring Center because she did not want any presents.
Lorena Schmidt enjoys playing bingo and reading in her spare time.