Georgette William grew up on Hazard Street and now lives at Penn Home
It’s not every day someone within the neighborhood turns 100 years old, but as of Sept. 26, Georgette Williams has done just that. Having never expected to live this long, the Penn Home resident and Fishtown native says it is surprising to have reached this monumental birthday, and that it simply feels good.
Having spent most of her life living on Hazard Street in a house that was her parents’, and that later her husband fixed up when they took over the residence, Williams remembers a time when the neighborhood was quite different. Back then, she recalls it having been much quieter, with fewer cars and houses.
“I liked the old days,” Williams said. “There were a lot of people, but everyone was nice and did not bother you.”
She added that during these years her favorite part of Fishtown was the people. Although she says she was a quiet person, even as a kid, the local community really felt like family.
“Being a quiet person, people who knew me didn’t give me give me a hard time,” Williams, who used to be employed as a housekeeper for many years, said. “[Fishtown has] certainly changed from the old days, but being at Penn Home has let me stay in the neighbor, and to get to see so many changes that I’m starting to not recognize it.”
Despite having been taking it easier lately, living in Penn Home, where she has lived for the past 15 years and which will celebrate 170 years of service next year, has allowed Williams to still join in bingo games and socials. She also always looks forward to when the hairdresser and visitors come to the home.
Included in these visitors, Williams says she has recently had some family reach out, and that she has a good friend who generally helps her take care of things. She also has a sister who is 96 years old and who lives in Texas.
As both she and her sister have both lived notably long lives, when asked what the secret to living for an entire century, Williams replied that she wished she knew. However, she said she’s still trying to figure it out for herself, and plans to just focus on her health while staying positive.
“Just live a good life, whatever your good is,” she advises others.
For anyone wishes to send Williams a birthday card, they can be mailed to Penn Home at 1401 E. Susquehanna Ave., Philadelphia, PA 19125.