St. Louis, MO — It’s not every day that you get to celebrate your 105th birthday, but Mary Slaten, a resident at Christian Extended Care & Rehabilitation (CECR), is doing just that.

On September 27, Slaten had a large group of family and friends celebrating with her on her special day from all over the United States, some of whom had traveled from as far away as Texas and New York. They took her to Applebee’s, where she had a birthday lunch and said that she was happy to see her loved ones and thoroughly enjoyed her birthday celebration.

Slaten was born in 1918 in Providence, Kentucky. Her journey led her to St. Louis in 1939 and later to the Florissant area in 1982. Before retiring Slaten worked at the Missouri State Hospital.

When asked about her age, Slaten said, “I feel like I did yesterday, being 104.”

Slaten’s family commented about her cooking, particularly her skill in making “chow chow,” a type of North American pickled relish. They also complimented her on recipes for homemade fudge and pickled beets. She was known as the baker of the family and often crafted bread from scratch.

Until about two years ago, Slaten lived independently, managing her cooking and daily tasks on her own.

Since 2020, Slaten has been part of the CECR community. The staff say that she continues to bring joy to those around her. She enjoys new experiences, especially when shared with her nieces, nephews, and great-nieces and nephews, and is an inspiration to all who know her.

When asked about the secret to her long life, Mary’s advice is simple: “Don’t dwell on it; just live.” Her family also shared some of her life mottos, including “Don’t worry about it” and “It will be alright, it’s going to pass.”

Slaten’s birthday shows that age is just a number when your spirit remains young forever.