July 16th, 2019

Hatter turns 100 years old

By Mo Cranker on February 11, 2019.

Katie Schafer sits with a balloon on her 100th birthday Saturday, Feb. 11, 2019 at the Wellington. Schafer, originally from Burstall, Sask. spent years in Schuler before moving to the Hat to retire. She spent the afternoon with a large group of family and friends.


It’s not every day that someone in the community turns 100 years old.

Around 100 people gathered at The Wellington Saturday afternoon to celebrate the birthday of Katie Schafer.

Schafer was born on Feb. 9 1919 on the family farm located southeast of Burstall, Sask., and was the second child born in a family with eight children.

“I never thought I’d make it this far,” Schafer said Saturday with a laugh.

Schafer married her husband Tony on Nov. 14 1938 and they ended up moving to Medicine Hat in 1980. The couple settled into a house in Ross Glen before transitioning to a retirement residence in 1997.

Shortly after the move in ’97 Tony passed away — the couple had celebrated 58 years of marriage together. They have two children, Jeanette and Raymond.

“She’s actually doing very well,” said Schafer’s daughter Jeanette Forrest. “She feels good and she’s still very independent — for someone turning 100, I’d say that’s pretty great.”

Schafer spent many years working on the farm — keeping things in order, feeding the family and became a very experienced seamstress over the years. Schafer tended to a lot of the day-to-day chores, milked cows and took care of the couple’s social outings.

As for Schafer’s secret to a long, healthy life?

“Work hard,” she said.

Forrest says her mom always cooked healthy meals for the family to ensure good health.

“She always made sure we were getting enough vegetables when we ate,” she said.

Schafer’s sister, Mary vandenBrink, is her only living sibling and just celebrated her 99th birthday in Calgary.

Schafer resides at the Wellington and spends her time watching television, relaxing and socializing.

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