Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

These charming folks were born in 1913

Maybe Ponce de Leon really did find the fountain of youth in Florida. North Pinellas residents Catherine Chapman Adams, Estelle Ann Blaske and George Bossard might agree — all celebrated 100th birthdays this month.

• • •

Catherine Adams, who lives at West Bay of Tampa in Oldsmar, was treated to a party Oct. 4 in the facility's main dining room. During the festivities, Oldsmar Mayor Doug Bevis presented the centenarian with a proclamation officially designating Oct. 5, 2013, as Catherine Adams Day.

Born Oct. 5, 1913, in Fort Wayne, Ind., she attended parochial school.

A homemaker, she was married 42 years to her first husband, Oram Feeley. Her second marriage, to Harry Adams, lasted 22 years until his death at age 102.

Adams, who used to walk 3 miles daily, is a fan of the Chicago Cubs and Tampa Bay Rays.

Her keys to longevity are to "work hard daily, love your family and don't smoke."

A mother of three (two now deceased), she has 11 grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren.

• • •

Estelle Ann Blaske celebrated her centenarian status Oct. 9 with refreshments and entertainment provided by Coral Oaks Independent Living Center in Palm Harbor, where she has been a resident since 2006. She went to dinner with close friends and family later in the evening.

She was born Oct. 9, 1913, in Milwaukee, Wis., to John and Josephine Pawlowski, Polish farmers who emigrated to the United States in 1908. She had nine siblings, all now deceased.

Her love of sewing and knitting began with trade school courses in Milwaukee and she worked as a hostess for affluent families during the Depression.

After marrying Walter J. Blaske on Feb. 9, 1932, in Milwaukee, she managed a Charles of the Ritz Salon, owned a children's clothing boutique where she made all the garments, and worked for Stretch and Sew, a business based on its founder's special techniques for sewing knits.

When they married, her husband was a widower with a 4-year-old son, the couple's only child. She has a granddaughter in Kansas and a grandson in Michigan.

The Blaskes retired in 1970 and moved to Florida, where they had vacationed since the mid 1950s. He died in 1981, months shy of the couple's 50th wedding anniversary. She remained in their Clearwater home until 2006, when she moved to Coral Oaks.

Known as "Stasha" to her Polish-heritage family, Blaske is aunt to hundreds of her siblings' children and grandchildren. In October 2012 she celebrated the birth of Aurelia Estelle Slagle, a fifth-generation baby who arrived a week before Blaske's 99th birthday.

Blaske always addressed people by name when conversing and found that asking questions about the lives of others kept her engaged with those she loved, exemplifying her philosophy, "If you find people interesting, they will be interested in you."

She recalls names, dates and locations without hesitation. Described as a prayer warrior, she gives thanks daily for good health, her large family and God's blessings.

• • •

George Bossard of Clearwater loves apple pie, old movies and fresh air. He remembers farming, building homes, playing sports, dancing, traveling and how he loved his horse, Jerry.

For his 100th birthday on Oct. 15, Bayshore Home Care family along with the Oaks of Clearwater where he lives worked together to provide him with a blast from the past that included apple pie, a horse, goats and rabbits. Four generations of Bossard's family and many of the retirement community's residents celebrated and shared memories with the centenarian at the farm-themed party and petting zoo.

"George has a great smile and a wonderful spirit," said Christine Hamacher of Bayshore Home Care. "We wanted to do something that would simply bring him joy on as many levels as possible."

Bossard's advice to "Eat dessert first!" is simple and delicious; every year on his birthday he makes a point to eat apple pie before his dinner.

Mail Good For You items to Tampa Bay Times, 1130 Cleveland St., Suite 100-A, Clearwater, FL 33755; fax to (727) 445-4119; or email

These charming folks were born in 1913 10/25/13 [Last modified: Friday, October 25, 2013 7:41pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Pitching on no rest backfires for Erasmo Ramirez, Rays

    The Heater

    ARLINGTON, Texas — After battling through a 61/2-hour affair Sunday in Minnesota that was the second-longest game in franchise history, Rays officials were quick to decide that even though Erasmo Ramirez had just worked the 15th and final inning, they would stick with him to start Monday's game in Texas.

    Erasmo Ramirez, starting a day after closing a 15-inning marathon, struggles against the Rangers, comes out after throwing 43 pitches in 21/3 innings.
  2. Britain investigating missed signals over Manchester bomber


    LONDON — Britain's domestic intelligence agency, MI5, is investigating its response to warnings from the public about the threat posed by Salman Abedi, the suicide bomber who killed 22 people and wounded dozens more in an attack at a crowded Ariana Grande concert in Manchester, England, last week.

    People gather Monday at St. Ann’s Square in Manchester, England, to view tributes to victims of the suicide bombing that killed 22 on May 22 as a concert by Ariana Grande was concluding.
  3. Trump condemns killing of pair who tried to stop racist rant


    The mayor of Portland, Ore., on Monday urged U.S. officials and organizers to cancel a "Trump Free Speech Rally" and other similar events, saying they are inappropriate and could be dangerous after two men were stabbed to death on a train as they tried to help a pair of young women targeted by an anti-Muslim tirade.

    Coco Douglas, 8, leaves a handmade sign and rocks she painted at a memorial in Portland, Ore., on Saturday for two bystanders who were stabbed to death Friday while trying to stop a man who was yelling anti-Muslim slurs and acting aggressively toward two young women. From left are Coco's brother, Desmond Douglas; her father, Christopher Douglas; and her stepmother, Angel Sauls. [Associated Press]
  4. What major sporting event could Tampa Bay land next?

    Lightning Strikes

    We are on quite a roll as a community. First, we had a Super Bowl drop from the storm clouds into our lap. It just reaffirms the fact that Tampa Bay is great at lap. And Monday it became official: Next year's NHL All-Star Game will be held at Amalie Arena. The best in the world will be here to shoot and score. And …

    MVP Wayne Gretzky is congratulated at the 1999 NHL All-Star game, the last time the event was in Tampa Bay. [DIRK SHADD   |   Times file]
  5. How the 2018 NHL All-Star Game reflects Jeff Vinik's vision for Tampa

    Lightning Strikes

    TAMPA — There were several reasons the NHL announced Monday that Tampa will host the 2018 All-Star Game on Jan. 28.

    This was the  logo for the 1999 NHL All-Star game played Sunday, Jan 24, 1999 at the Ice Palace in Tampa Bay. (AP Photo)