Local woman celebrates turning 100

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LANSING, MI (WILX) -- A local Lansing woman celebrated her 100 birthday today with a big bash.

Francis E. Valenti turns 100 on Monday but got her birthday celebrations started a little earlier with family and friends by her side.

The trick to living to be 100? Valenti says that she did and still does live an active lifestyle.

"My husband and I were big square dancers," Valenti said. "That's what we do a lot square dancing, round dancing ballroom dancing."

Her husband died at 96 and was a World War II veteran. They were married 72 years.

Even her square dance partners joined in on the celebrations

"We used to square dance with them and every time after the dance was over she'll say, she would say, let's go get a waffle," Ardith Locke said.

Valenti's daughter Kathleen Valenti said there are too many stories to think of just one too tell.

"It's too big, too big to even put into words," Kathleen said.

Her family said that at 100 Francis still does mostly everything on her own.

"She is still independent, she lives in a two-story house, she does everything by herself still.," Granddaughter Heather Haviland said. "The only thing she doesn't do is drive."

Valenti's granddaughter said the family feels blessed to have their grandmother still around.

"I mean she's just super intact still and she's amazing," Haviland said. "We're just super blessed."

Valenti said she had a happy birthday and that she wouldn't change her lifetime with anyone.

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