Local resident celebrates her 100th birthday
By ED FRANKS
Pine Island resident Anna Goot turns 100 Saturday, Sept. 12. Her birthday party was held Saturday, Aug. 29.
“We wanted to have the party before the kids went back to school,” Goot said. “We were lucky we dodged the hurricane.”
Goot was born in Ipswitch, Mass., Sept. 12, 1915.
The town of Ipswitch was founded in 1630 and is one of the oldest cities in the country.
“We have a lot of history in Ipswitch,” Goot said. “And we’re famous for Ipswitch clams and the beautiful scenery it’s God’s country up there. The only time I left before moving to Florida was to go on my honeymoon.
“I was the sixth of eight children and it was beautiful place to grow up,” Goot continued. “We had a small farm with a cow, and back then, by the time children were 16, they went to work. I went to work in a shoe factory. My job was to sew the lining inside the shoes. Women were paid $35 a week.”
In addition to growing up in Ipswitch, it’s also where she met her husband.
“I met a Polish Catholic Ipswitch boy named John Goot and married him in 1935,” Goot said. “The tradition back then was as each of the eight children married, they lived with their parents for a year. This was the custom so the young couple could build up some savings to buy a house. My husband and I lived with his parents and I called them mom and dad.
“We had two children, Elizabeth and Deborah, 13 years apart,” Goot said.
Today, Anna Goot has seven grandchildren and 14 great-grandchildren.
“We had four generations at my birthday party and now I’m waiting for a fifth generation,” Goot said.
Family began arriving days before her party.
“I can’t begin to tell you how much it means to me that so many of my family members came for my birthday party,” Goot said. “All my nieces and nephews, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. They came from as far away as Colorado and we had a house full of people. It was a really wonderful party.
“It’s been a wonderful life and this was a beautiful birthday,” Goot said. “The Polish word for beautiful is ‘schlinchna.’ I was thinking what can I say that my family will remember. I thought of ‘I hope you all inherited my genes and live a long happy life.'”