Today is a pretty momentous day, for it is the celebration of a very special birthday. Her name is Lydia Schroeder and today she turns 100 years young. I had the absolute pleasure of meeting Miss Lydia last week after I heard she’d been honored at our recent 125 years as a city celebration. Lydia, who’s maiden name is Walker, has lived in our City of Orange for 92 years having moved here in 1920, making her our longest living resident…how cool is that!
I learned through the course of my meeting Lydia that she is, of course, connected to many of us here in Orange. I posted a picture of her and me on Instagram and my own personal Facebook, and was (not so) surprised to have several people post comments that knew her. I even discovered that Katie Schroeder of Schroeder Studio Gallery is one of her many grand daughters, 3 degrees of Old Towne Orange!
Lydia has 4 children (Robert, Jack, Jim and Carol) who gave life to 10 kids of their own resulting in 19 grandchildren (and one more on the way)! What a wonderful sized family to raise! Lydia’s mother donated Walker Hall, which is part of St. John’s Lutheran Church and she is the oldest living graduate of St. John’s Lutheran School. She’s also a graduate of Orange High School. Her roots definitely run deep in this great city of ours! Rumor has it that she even met Clark Gable and Joan Crawford when she was a young girl in the ’30s.
Katie was kind enough to send me some photos of the beautiful Lydia as a young girl and woman.
Here she is at the age of 14:
And at 18:
And this is Lydia in the early 1930s, isn’t she fabulous!! In this picture below, she is sitting in front of the home that her family built when they moved to Orange, 1305 E. Chapman Avenue (only 2 blocks from my office!).
Lydia was born on April 24, 1913, that’s 100 years ago today. Join me in wishing her a very HAPPY BIRTHDAY!