Eileen Pawluk holds her newest-born grandchild Luke Niiranen at her surprise birthday party at Cloverdale’s Legion on Saturday, Oct. 8. (Special to the Aldergrove Star)

Birthday bash for an Aldergrove resident celebrating 100 years

Five generations of Pawluks surprised their centenarian with a party of her own

One of Aldergrove’s oldest residents, Eileen Pawluk, celebrated becoming a centenarian this weekend after almost 30 years living locally.

Almost as many guests as years of Pawluk’s life filled Cloverdale’s Royal Canadian Legion for a surprise party on Saturday (Oct. 8).

Guests including five generations of Pawluks, with one guest young enough for the birthday girl to hold in her arms.

The party was organized by her son Terry, his wife Geraldine, and with the help of their children – all who travelled from 100 Mile House to be there to celebrate the special occasion.

Pawluk’s daughter Julie Donahue, and her husband, said they came from Michigan to celebrate a long life, well-lived among friends.

Pawluk was born in Surrey to Elton Light and Minnie Gifford Hobbs, who met in England in 1918 – while Light was recuperating from a wound he suffered at Vimy Ridge during the First World War.

She was the oldest of two sisters and one brother “who didn’t have much, but were happy,” growing up on an orchard in Penticton, Eileen’s granddaughter Vicki Niiranen relayed.

Pawluk met her late husband, Alec, at a near-by orchard. The two were married in 1940, and relocated to Surrey to raise Terry and Julie.

Alec fought in the Canadian military in the Second World War, stationed in Italy.

After he returned to Surrey, and eventually retired, the Pawluks found time for all the things they relished most: camping and enjoying their lively grandchildren.

The couple retired and relocated to Aldergrove in 1983. Alec passed away in 1997.

Eileen, herself, served as the president of her children’s parent-teacher associations and as an executive of many bowling leagues.

“She still plays crib to this day,” Niiranen said, noting there’s a long list of puzzles, knitting projects, and bridge games she has won over the years.

Pawluk is best known for her belief in good, clean living that included long walks she took her whole life – up until 2016.

In 2000, she moved to Langley because it was somewhere she could “walk everywhere.”

And in 2017, she moved into Jackman Manor, a residential care home for seniors in Aldergrove.

There she has kept in close contact with her two children, six grandchildren, and 10 great grandchildren.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here


Just Posted

West Fine Art Show honours the legacy of Langley artist Peter Ewart

Upcoming show, which benefits the Langley School District Foundation, will run March 6 to 8

Proposed 6.67% tax increase to be considered at Langley City council meeting

City to borrow $10 million a year over the next five years to prepare for the arrival of SkyTrain

Kodiaks stand unbeaten in junior hockey playoffs

Aldergrove advances to second round despite the loss and gain of crucial players

Recreation registration gets user-friendly through new Township of Langley system

Swimming, skating, camps, and classes can be accessed using online portal launching on Feb. 25

Langley teen who died of apparent drug overdose to receive a hockey-themed memorial

Police report on Carson Crimeni case now in the hands of Crown counsel

Pipeline dispute: Tories put no-confidence motion on House of Commons agenda

Conservatives say they have no confidence in the Trudeau government to end the rail blockades

B.C., federal ministers plead for meeting Wet’suwet’en dissidents

Scott Fraser, Carolyn Bennett says they can be in Smithers Thursday

TransLink seeks injunction ahead of pipeline, Indigenous rights protest

The protest rally is in opposition to the Coastal GasLink and Trans Mountain pipeline projects

Province shows no interest in proposed highway between Alberta and B.C.

Province says it will instead focus on expanding the Kicking Horse Canyon to four lanes

Mysterious bang booms over Sumas Mountain once again

Police unsure of source, quarry companies say, ‘not us’

First case of COVID-19 in B.C. has fully recovered, health officer says

Three other cases are symptom-free and expected to test negative soon

A&W employees in Ladysmith get all-inclusive vacation for 10 years of service

Kelly Frenchy, Katherine Aleck, and Muriel Jack are headed on all-expenses-paid vacations

Via Rail lays off 1,000 employees temporarily as anti-pipeline blockades drag on

The Crown corporation has suspended passenger trains on its Montreal-Toronto and Ottawa-Toronto

Budget 2020: Weaver ‘delighted,’ minority B.C. NDP stable

Project spending soars along with B.C.’s capital debt

Most Read