100 Years and Counting

These five Bergenites reached triple digits. Can you? Members of our centenarian quintet share secrets and stories that we couldn’t squeeze into the pages of BERGEN.

Several of the centenarians we interviewed for the September issue of BERGEN had such great stories to tell…but we couldn’t fit them all in the magazine! Here are some “extras” that didn’t make the print edition.

Bill Protze, Saddle Brook: "Saddle Brook celebrated its 300th anniversary in June and they celebrated my 100thbirthday at the same time. In the end it seemed as if the whole event was about my birthday! The chief of police took a bunch of my favorite photographs and enlarged them and framed them for me. They gave me the proclamation of Saddle Brook. I got a one hundred dollar bill. The chief of police gave me a police cap. I really felt special. It meant a lot to me.”

Dorothy Kearns, Wyckoff: "My husband was an attorney and during WWII one of his clients wanted to get his relatives out of Vienna. So we went on a trip to rescue them. It was quite an experience. We took a boat to England, and from England we went to France, and from France we went to Switzerland, and from Switzerland we took a train through Germany to get to Vienna. We rescued the relatives, and in order to get back home we had to go up to Canada and travel down the coast to the United States because there were submarines in the Atlantic Ocean. The whole process took almost two months. It was eye-opening, and I’ll never forget it."

Categories: Bergen Health & Life