Glendale and friends celebrate 100 good years

first_imgGLENDALE – The “Jewel City” celebrated its 100th birthday this weekend with an all-day party Saturday, and Gertrude Ness, a couple months younger than the city itself, was there with plenty of memories. Her bucolic Spazier Avenue home was originally surrounded by orchards of peach and apricot trees and grapevines, “like a nice little pretty mountain village,” she said last week from the home near the Burbank border. Now, suburban homes spread on all sides. “Many of these houses were (built) during the war,” she said. Downtown Glendale was only a streetcar ride away. Ness worked for Lockheed, building B-17 bombers, like thousands of other “Rosie the Riveters” toiling in industry as the men were away fighting in World War II. She remembers children from her neighborhood going over to the old Grand Central Air Terminal to watch the P-38 fighter planes zoom across the sky. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORECasino Insider: Here’s a look at San Manuel’s new high limit rooms, Asian restaurant As part of the centennial celebration, the city found six 100-year-old Glendale residents. City officials included Ness, who turns 100 in April, among the group. On Saturday, she took part in the 100th birthday ceremony at the Glendale Civic Center, where she was given a proclamation. The city also found Hripsime Khachikian, who not only has lived to be 101 but also survived the Armenian genocide when she was 10. Khachikian, whose English is pretty much limited to saying “America good!,” has lived in Glendale since her family brought her here from Baghdad in 1970. “Because it’s America of course we like,” Khachikian said in Armenian, speaking through an interpreter. “We loved it here, so we came here.” While she hasn’t spent her entire life here, Ness came to Glendale in 1941 from Minnesota after a doctor advised her husband to move to warmer climes to avoid falling victim to pneumonia. Her husband died 16 years ago. “I can’t imagine living any place else … after all these years,” she said. After working during World War II at Lockheed, Ness got a job with the Glendale Unified School District and eventually became its director of early childhood education. She also was a board member for the YWCA of Glendale, and had a hand in creating its shelter for battered women in 1979. She remembers when domestic violence was swept under the rug. “It took a long time for women to realize they could get out,” Ness said. “They thought they had to stay with their men because they didn’t know how they were going to live.” Alex Dobuzinskis, (818) 546-3304 [email protected] 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img

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