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Irene Zimmerman celebrates 100 years

  • SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS Irene Zimmerman says she has lived a contented life in her 100 years.
    SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS Irene Zimmerman says she has lived a contented life in her 100 years.
Published April 11. 2013 05:02PM

Irene Zimmerman celebrated her 100th birthday on April 7. She says she has lived a contented life and attributes her long life to God.

"He has a plan for me. I read my Bible every day," she says.

Irene adds that she has followed a healthy lifestyle and has been lucky enough to have very little illness.

One of six children, Irene was born in Tharptown, Pa. She had five brothers. Her first job was in a dress factory until she married her husband, Roy Zimmerman in 1931. They lived in Shamokin and had four children.

Their first child, a son, died at birth. Her daughter, JoAnn Spearley passed away at the age of 43. Surviving are son Frank Zimmerman and daughter Susan Shebelsky. She has 10 grandchildren (one deceased), 14 great-grandchildren and four great-great-grandchildren.

She and her husband celebrated 56 years together before he passed away.

Her father-in-law owned a jewelry store and she worked in the store during holidays and special events.

Irene had been an active member in the Rotary Club, Exchange Club, Eastern Star and served on the board of the YWCA.

Raised in the Mennonite faith, after she was married, she and her family attended their local Methodist church.

She had been an avid cook and baker. Her favorite meal to make for family was a roast beef or turkey dinner. She enjoyed making Dutch cakes, pies and cupcakes to give away to family, friends and for fundraisers.

"Especially sticky buns," she says.

Irene likes watching the Cooking Channel. Her favorites are "Giada at Home" and "The Barefoot Contessa." She also enjoys watching "Wheel of Fortune" and "Jeopardy."

She currently lives at The Village at Palmerton.

"The people here are so nice. I am treated well."

Her greatest joys are when her little great-grandchildren come to visit her.

"They're something else," she chuckles.

Her advice to everyone is to "Do your best, trust in God and let the rest up to Him."

Irene's family will host a birthday celebration in her honor with family and friends April 14 at Blue Ridge Country Club.

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