September 13, 2013 —
On September 12, Marie Zelesky thought she was going to the regular meeting of the Jeffersonville Seniors Club at the Jeffersonville Town Hall. Little did she know that Assemblywoman Aileen Gunther had planned a surprise birthday party for Marie, who will turn 106 years old on September 20. There were balloons, cake, party hats and Marie’s closest friends for the celebration.
Gunther read a statement from Senator Charles Schumer lauding Marie’s many accomplishments, including volunteering for 40 years at Catskill Regional Medical Center in Callicoon, where she still does volunteer work. Marie is awaiting a letter from President Barack Obama. She was also recently the Grand Marshall in the recent Hortonville Parade. After she blew out the candles on her cake, Marie said, “You have all been so wonderful to me.” She added, “I hope every person in this room will celebrate their 106th birthday.”
Marie is the oldest person in Sullivan County and has lived here her entire life. She was born in Hortonville and now lives in Callicoon. She has one daughter.
After the celebration, the Jeffersonville seniors played Bingo, which they play at every meeting, and Marie always calls the Bingo games. “I’m the Bingo lady,” she said, and smiled.