Woman celebrating 100th birthday today

November 30, 1999|By JANET HEIM


Violet "Dot" Michaels' biggest complaint is that she's getting forgetful, but her sense of humor is as sharp as ever.

When asked about turning 100 today, Michaels quipped, "That's pretty high. I'll go along with it and see what happens."

Dot was one of five daughters born to Joseph and Isa Solomon. They lived in Kitzmiller, Md., which is near Deep Creek Lake in Garrett County.

She met her husband, Joseph Michaels, at the Celanese plant where they both worked. He was a foreman and she was a "go-to-girl" between shops.

"He followed her around 'til she said 'Yes,'" said daughter-in-law Sandy Michaels.

The couple married and had five children, two boys and three girls. Their youngest children were twins born to Dot when she was 40.


Dot never learned to drive, depending on buses, and family and friends for transportation. She still lives in her home near Frostburg, but stays with family at night.

Michaels spends part of the time with her son Larry Michaels and his wife, Sandy, who live on Virginia Avenue in Hagerstown.

Her favorite pastimes are watching the Baltimore Orioles on TV and playing bingo. Michaels said most of the time she plays bingo she "donates her money" because she seldom wins.

"I never heard of such a thing when I was a kid. I like it now when I can find money to pay my way," Michaels said of bingo.

She did have plenty of experiences with baseball as a child, though. She and her sisters enjoyed the game and would watch the boys play from their windows.

Eventually, the girls made their own baseball field and wouldn't let the boys play on it.

For her 95th birthday, the Orioles sent the longtime fan signed baseballs from Jim Palmer and Cal Ripken.

Besides being a "bingo addict," Larry Michaels remembers his mother making delicious soups. He said she has a great appetite and loves ice cream and sweets.

Dot Michaels still reads the newspaper "from front to back every morning." She enjoys reading magazines and used to like reading romance novels.

Michaels has 16 grandchildren, 21 great-grandchildren and three great-great-grandchildren.

A birthday celebration was scheduled for today at the Potomac Fish and Game Club.

"I had a pretty good life," Michaels said.

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