A lot has happened in the last 100 years of the life of Elizabeth Bourey, a resident of Oak Pointe, Neosho. On Tuesday, she turned 100 years old.

Born in Marionville, she attended a country school.

"The school house [had] very few kids," she said. "It was a very country school. My parents farmed, I lived on a farm all of my life until I graduated from high school [in Marionville]. We had everything on the farm. The big thing that I can remember is when I was five or six years old, we picked strawberries. My folks always had strawberries - acres of them. We always had everything on the farm. You grew your own garden, your own corn, beans, everything."

Another memory she had with the strawberries involved a neighboring town - Logan, located just outside of Marionville.

"My folks would load up strawberries and take them to Logan by the crate. The railroad went through Marionville and Logan and on into Springfield I guess," she said.

Sometime after graduation, she and her parents would move to Colorado.

"I worked at Woolworth's, another five-and-dime store and I was the candy counter," Bourey said. "I got married to Arthur when I was 23. My husband was 25. [We] got married in 1940."

They stayed in Colorado until 1950, when they moved back to Aurora, living on a Grade A dairy farm. They have four children (three sons and one daughter) and numerous grandchildren and great-grandchildren. After their daughter, Vicki Bunzel graduated from high school in 1972, Elizabeth and Arthur moved to Carthage. Arthur later retired and moved back to Aurora. He passed away in 2001.

Viewing history

Aside from living through World War I, World War II, the Korean War, Vietnam War, countless presidents and other wars, there is the technology aspect.

"I saw the first airplane I can remember and the first TV," she said. "On the airplanes if you heard a noise up there [in the sky], you would run out to see it. With the Great Depression, I never knew that it was there. We always had plenty to eat, because we grew it. They always butchered, chickens and cows. We never went hungry."

She said her favorite president was Jimmy Carter.

"They worked so much after [the presidency]," she said. "He and his wife would go out and help people."


Every since she can remember, one of her hobbies has been reading.

"I like to read almost anything," Bourey said. "I would read anything they would let me check out of the library. I use to embroider, loved to garden and even plant flowers."

Living to 100

Bunzel said her mother was not the only one in her mom's family to live to 100.

"Actually, we have good genes, because her sister lived to be 102, and she died last year," Bunzel said.

Asked what advice she would give others for a long life, Bourey said, "keep busy."