Century Club: Varied experiences fill their 200 years of life


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Eva S. Borgia is proud of several achievements, but turning 100 isn't the best of them.

Mrs. Borgia, who was born on Dec. 17, 1912, on a dairy farm in Kennedy, wrote an article for the Post-Gazette in March 2011 about being the only kid in her neighborhood to ride Charlie, a "vagrant donkey." She's even prouder that she completed her GED at Community College of Allegheny County in 1974, earning the highest test score of any student to that point.

She was the eighth of nine children born to Kunigunda and Frank Bayer, owners of Maywood Dairy, which later became Bayers Dairy. She attended St. Mary's School in McKees Rocks through eighth grade, then two years at St. Mary's High School on Webster Avenue in Pittsburgh. She worked for several years in the office of Pennsylvania & Lake Erie Railroad, then married William Snyder on June 23, 1936. They had two daughters: Connie Snyder Mielcuszny of St. Louis and Karen Snyder Klatte of Robinson.

Expert at sewing and baking, Mrs. Snyder made dolls for Randall's toy store Downtown and for her four grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren. After her husband died in 1972, she moved to Florida and did alterations and sewing projects. She also traveled to Europe, Alaska and South America with friends. In 1979, she wed Jim Borgia, and they were married for eight years.

In February 2010, Mrs. Borgia moved back to Pittsburgh and now lives at Harbour Assisted Living of South Hills. She enjoys visiting with family, watching birds and squirrels from her window, snacking on chocolate and having an occasional beer. About 50 relatives celebrated her birthday with her at Scoglio's in Green Tree.

Doesn't drink or smoke

Stella Vitulla Walkowski believes she lived to be 100 because of good genes and because she never drank alcohol or smoked. And although she likes food, she "eats to live," not "lives to eat."

She was born on Jan. 7, 1913, the seventh of nine children born to Pasquale and Irene Vitulla. She grew up in Brushton and graduated from Crescent Elementary School and Westinghouse High School. In 1933, she earned her registered nursing diploma from the Pittsburgh City Home and City Hospital at Mayview.

Six years later, she married Joseph Walkowski of Polish Hill, a lieutenant colonel in the Army. For three years, they lived in Germany, where their son, Joseph Jr., was born. Mrs. Walkowski enjoyed sewing, volunteering, reading and playing Scrabble. She celebrated her birthday with her son in Salt Lake City, Utah, where she now lives.

If you or a friend or a relative recently turned 100 or will soon do so, the Post-Gazette would like to hear from you. To be included in Century Club, send the honoree's biographical information and your phone number to Pittsburgh Post-Gazette Century Club, Attn: Kevin Kirkland, 34 Blvd. of the Allies, Pittsburgh 15222. Fax: 412-491-8452. E-mail: kkirkland@post-gazette.com.

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