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Look at those ladies! With a friendship that started over 90 years-ago Leona Barnes, Gladys Butler, Ruth Hammett and Bernice Underwood, all from Southeast D.C., will celebrate their 100th birthday together this summer.

“We all are grateful, and we thank the Lord for all of us to see 99,” Barnes told the Washington Post, “If we don’t make 100, it’s up to Him — but we made the 99.”

From the Washington Post:

Three of the four live on their own and still do their own housekeeping. Hammett volunteered at church and at a Veterans Affairs hospital until a few years ago and now lives with family. Underwood gets on her stationary bike every day and loves to dance. Without hesi­ta­tion, she bent forward, straight-legged, and touched the floor. “I’m old,” she quipped, “but I’m not cold.”

“They say, ‘You okay by yourself?’ and I say ‘I feel good by myself,’ ” she said. “I sing to myself and I talk to myself. As long as I don’t answer myself!”

By age 92, the women thought they had seen it all. But then something happened that they would never have predicted.

“That a black man became president of the United States,” Barnes said softly. It was, she said, the best thing that ever happened to her. “I never thought in my wildest dreams that that would ever happen. That’s how far down we were.”

Butler shook her head. “I just wish that some of my parents and my sisters and my relatives could have been here to witness it.”

“The Lord carry me home, I carry that with me,” said Underwood.


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