On Sunday a very special birthday was celebrated in the city of South Gate in Southern California for Mrs. Maria Gudelia Cáceres, who turned 103 years old.
Mrs. Maria, who is affectionately called Carmelita, was born in Peru during the First World War. Approximately 34 years ago she came to the United States and became a citizen.
In more than a century of existence, she witnessed transformations in the world. She says she was pleasantly surprised by the show of affection, an event that was celebrated with balloons and masks.
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"I have not had any secrets. I live life as it has come to me, but there has been nothing special. It is a surprise because I did not think about any of this. It is very nice, I see that they are happy with me," said Carmelita.
She is considered for now as the oldest person in the city of South Gate.
Carmelita has a large family -- she had 9 children. She has 37 grandchildren, 64 great-grandchildren, and eight great-great-grandchildren.
Happy birthday, Carmelita!