By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Local Resident Feted With Drive By Wishes
birthday girl
Riverbank resident Mildred Stephens King waits in front of her home in the rural outskirts southeast of town last Sunday afternoon for a "drive-by" celebration of her 101st birthday. Friends and family members organized the ‘socially distanced’ event for after church, making up, in part, for the cancellation of festivities at this time last year when the COVID pandemic began to take hold and events were being shelved. Ric McGinnis/The News

A long-time resident of Riverbank, Mildred Stephens King, has celebrated her 101st birthday, with the help of family and friends over the weekend. It helped make up for missing out last year, when a planned special observance of her landmark ‘centennial’ birthday last March was squashed by the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.

So now, she’s both older and wiser, marking the occasion with a ‘drive-by celebration’ this past Sunday, organized by family and friends.

The afternoon weather was sunny but a little breezy as family members, including children, grandchildren, and even a great grandchild or two, lined up in front of the rural home southeast of the Riverbank city limits proper.

Mildred and her entourage waved as decorated cars carrying friends honked on their way down the street, sharing good wishes from afar in the socially distant celebration.

The caravan turned around just down the road, and rolled by once more, going the other direction on their way home.

To help her celebrate, a large sign was erected in the yard in front of the house, declaring “Happy 101st Birthday, Grandma.”

In addition to being tucked in warmly, with sunglasses, a coat and some blankets in a wheelchair in the front yard, the young-at-heart Mildred was decked out in a tiara as well as a silver and black sash that read ‘It’s My 100th Birthday,’ a sign that was left over from last year’s canceled celebration. It was just another part of what made turning 101 a memorable experience.

Her birthday, actually, was Monday, March 8 with the celebration coming the day before.