Steve and Bonnie Greenlee brought a cake for Dorscie Paterson, who celebrated her 108th birthday on Monday, Jan. 25 at the Cedar Hill long term care facility. Because of the pandemic, she remained inside, able to see, but not shake hands with visitors. (Dan Ferguson/Langley Advance Times)

Steve and Bonnie Greenlee brought a cake for Dorscie Paterson, who celebrated her 108th birthday on Monday, Jan. 25 at the Cedar Hill long term care facility. Because of the pandemic, she remained inside, able to see, but not shake hands with visitors. (Dan Ferguson/Langley Advance Times)

VIDEO: Celebrating a 108th birthday without physical contact

Pandemic required Langley woman to stay behind a window

Langley’s Dorscie Paterson celebrated her 108th birthday on Monday, Jan. 25, with about two dozen friends and relatives gathered outside the Cedar Hill residential care facility near Langley Memorial Hospital where the longtime community activist lives.

Her visitors waved and sang ‘Happy Birthday’ from outside, accompanied by a Scottish piper, while Paterson smiled and waved from inside in order to respect COVID-19 safety regulations, touching her hand to the glass when well-wishers did the same.

Friend Steve Greenlee, a regular visitor who has known her more than 30 years, said Paterson was frustrated by her enforced isolation.

“She’s bored,” he told the Langley Advance Times.

“She’s a people person.”

Bonnie Greenlee, Steve’s spouse, noted that a few days prior to her birthday, Paterson mentioned she would prefer 107, or 106 to 108.

READ ALSO: Langley’s Dorscie Paterson turns 107

“She just doesn’t like the number,” Greenlee remarked.

“She thinks it’s getting too high.”

Paterson has said she hopes coronavirus restrictions ease enough that she can attend the official opening of the new Langley hospice.

One of the visitors, retired MLA Rich Coleman said the new hospice should recognize Paterson’s contribution.

“They should name the place after her,” said Coleman, who has known Paterson for decades.

“She’s just an amazing lady.”

Paterson spent more than three decades advocating for a stand-alone hospice residence for Langley.

In 2005, it opened across from Langley Memorial with 10 beds.

Paterson went on to drive and volunteer at the hospice for many years.

Jeannine McCarthy, a long-time friend who convinced Paterson to join the hospice board, described her as a “wonderful, wonderful woman.”

“She’s done so much in her life to help people,” McCarthy commented.

When asked in the past about the secret to her longevity, Paterson, who has outlived her husband and son, said it was all about keeping busy and doing something good in the community.

“Keep your mind going. Study. Think. And if you see something that needs help, or you can do something about it, like I did about the hospice, do it! Don’t stand around. Do it right now. Don’t sit on your backside and hold your hands.”

Because of the pandemic, Paterson couldn’t attend the sod-turning for the new hospice.

READ ALSO: Construction underway on Langley’s new hospice residence

The new 15-bed facility currently being constructed on 52nd Avenue at 219A Street will have space for patients and their families, including private rooms for patients, a dedicated sanctuary, and family kitchen, laundry and washroom.

It will be able to care for about 350 people a year, up from the current hospice capacity of 238 patients.



dan.ferguson@langleyadvancetimes.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

CoronavirusLangleyLangley Hospice Society

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Longtime friend Jeannine McCarthy attended a celebration for Dorscie Paterson, who celebrated her 108th birthday on Monday, Jan. 25 at the Cedar Hill long term care facility. Because of the pandemic, Paterson remained inside, able to see, but not shake hands with visitors. (Dan Ferguson/Langley Advance Times)

Longtime friend Jeannine McCarthy attended a celebration for Dorscie Paterson, who celebrated her 108th birthday on Monday, Jan. 25 at the Cedar Hill long term care facility. Because of the pandemic, Paterson remained inside, able to see, but not shake hands with visitors. (Dan Ferguson/Langley Advance Times)

Friends posed for a picture with a birthday banner for Dorscie Paterson, who celebrated her 108th birthday on Monday, Jan. 25 at the Cedar Hill long term care facility. Because of the pandemic, she remained inside, able to see, but not shake hands with visitors. (Dan Ferguson/Langley Advance Times)

Friends posed for a picture with a birthday banner for Dorscie Paterson, who celebrated her 108th birthday on Monday, Jan. 25 at the Cedar Hill long term care facility. Because of the pandemic, she remained inside, able to see, but not shake hands with visitors. (Dan Ferguson/Langley Advance Times)

Donna Buckley also brought a cake for Dorscie Paterson, who celebrated her 108 birthday on Monday, Jan. 25th at the Cedar Hill long term care facility in Langley. (Dan Ferguson/Langley Advance Times)

Donna Buckley also brought a cake for Dorscie Paterson, who celebrated her 108 birthday on Monday, Jan. 25th at the Cedar Hill long term care facility in Langley. (Dan Ferguson/Langley Advance Times)

Langley activist Dorscie Paterson celebrated her 108th birthday on Monday, Jan. 25 at the Cedar Hill long term care facility. Because of the pandemic, she remained inside, able to see, but not shake hands with visitors. (Dan Ferguson/Langley Advance Times)

Langley activist Dorscie Paterson celebrated her 108th birthday on Monday, Jan. 25 at the Cedar Hill long term care facility. Because of the pandemic, she remained inside, able to see, but not shake hands with visitors. (Dan Ferguson/Langley Advance Times)

Just Posted

.
SHARE: Stunning vistas of Pitt Meadows and Maple Ridge

Send us your photo showing how you view Maple Ridge or Pitt Meadows, and it could be featured soon.

City hall is asking for public input on its greenhouse gas reduction plans.
Maple Ridge wants citizen input on greenhouse gas targets

City hall to host an online webinar on Thursday

Pitt Meadows United Church has a new Expression Station, to create a record of people’s feelings during this stage of the COVID-19 pandemic. (Special to The News)
Closed by COVID-19, Pitt Meadows church offers Expression Station

Say what you need to say in this pandemic time, offers United Church

Police tape is shown in Toronto Tuesday, May 2, 2017. (Graeme Roy/The Canadian Press)
CRIME STOPPERS: ‘Most wanted’ for the week of Feb. 28

Crime Stoppers’ weekly list based on information provided by police investigators

On Monday, March 1, 2021, Maple Ridge is hosting an information session on Choose to Move, a fitness program for people 65 and older. (Maple Ridge image)
Maple Ridge seniors invited to information session on free fitness program

Learn about the program for those 65 and older on Monday, March 1

A health worker holds a vial of AstraZeneca vaccine to be administered to members of the police at a COVID-19 vaccination center in Mainz, Germany, Thursday, Feb. 25, 2021. The federal state of Rhineland-Palatinate, start with the vaccination of police officers in internal police vaccination centers. (Andreas Arnold/dpa via AP)
B.C. officials to unveil new details of COVID vaccination plan Monday

Seniors and health-care workers who haven’t gotten their shot are next on the list

An investigation is underway after a man was shot and killed by Tofino RCMP in Opitsaht. (Black Press Media file photo)
Man shot and killed by RCMP near Tofino, police watchdog investigating

Investigation underway by Independent Investigations Office of British Columbia.

B.C. Supreme Court in Vancouver on Tuesday December 11, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C.’s compromise on in-person worship at three churches called ‘absolutely unacceptable’

Would allow outdoor services of 25 or less by Langley, Abbotsford and Chilliwack churches

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Baldy Mountain Resort was shut down on Saturday after a fatal workplace accident. (Baldy Mountain picture)
Alina Durham, mother of Shaelene Bell, lights candles on behalf of Bell’s two sons during a vigil on Saturday, Feb. 27, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
VIDEO and PHOTOS: Candlelight vigil for missing Chilliwack woman sends message of hope

Small group of family, friends gathered to shine light for 23-year-old mother Shaelene Bell

Jasmine and Gwen Donaldson are part of the CAT team working to reduce stigma for marginalized groups in Campbell River. Photo by Marc Kitteringham, Campbell River Mirror
Jasmine’s story: Stigma can be the hardest hurdle for those overcoming addiction

Recovering B.C. addict says welcome, connection and community key for rebuilding after drug habit

A Vancouver restaurant owner was found guilty of violating B.C.’s Human Rights Code by discriminating against customers on the basis of their race. (Pixabay)
Vancouver restaurant owner ordered to pay $4,000 to customers after racist remark

Referring to patrons as ‘you Arabs’ constitutes discrimination under B.C.’s Human Rights Code, ruling deems

Most Read