Vernon’s Annette Schlatter celebrated her 104th birthday on June 12 with recreation therapy assistant Emily Mohamed Martone, riding in the Heron Grove tandem wheelchair bike. (Submitted photo)

Okanagan woman turns 104, takes tandem wheelchair ride

Heron Grove resident Annette Schlatter celebrated a big milestone on June 12

Annette ‘Nettie’ Schlatter went for a ride on the Heron Grove tandem wheelchair bike Wednesday, June 12 to celebrate turning 104.

According to Heron Grove recreation and volunteer coordinator Chris Smith, the bike is just one of many modes of transportation that Annette has known over her lifetime.

Smith told The Morning Star that Annette was born in 1915 to a family with three sons and two daughters.

Her family name was Reiner and they lived at a homestead in Alberta, where she attended rural schools.

Smith said Annette remembers long walks through grain field tunnels and occasional encounters with bands of First Nations.

At the age of 16, she moved with her parents to Hines Creek, Alta., to start another homestead.

“Annette was a great help to them as they had no conveniences in the one room shack and water had to be carried uphill from the creek,” Smith said.

Back then, transportation was by horse, wagon or sleigh. Annette rode horseback to get supplies from town and pull roots from around the homestead.

“She loved her three years on the homestead, even carrying sick calves home from across the creek,” Smith said.

At 18, Annette’s parents insisted she go south to help a sibling who was having a baby. The move led to her employment at a dining room at the University of Alberta, where she met her future husband, Rudolph Schlatter. The two were married when she was 33.

Annette and Rudy lived in Calgary briefly where their only son, Terrence, was born. They moved to Tacoma, Washington, where Rudy was employed as a chef for 23 years, and then moved back to Alberta, where Rudy was employed in the oilfields as a chef. Work even took them to Resolute Bay in the Northwest Territories.

When they retired, the couple continued to live in Abbotsford as well as in Chilliwack, often snowbirding to Arizona and travelling.

Annette became a widow at 78. Smith said she remained active with church activities and keeping in touch with family on both sides of the border. She has nine great grandchildren.

She moved to the Okanagan area at 86, when she had a bad fall and came to recuperate with her niece in Lumby.

She then moved to Canterbury Court in Vernon where she resided for 12 years.

At 98, and needing a little more assistance, Smith said, she moved to a suite at Heron Grove.

“Annette has no answer as to how she has lived so long,” Smith said. “But gives all the credit to a gracious God, supportive family and friends, and now caring staff at this time of life.”

READ MORE: Vernon woman reaches major milestone – turns 100



karissa.gall@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Okanagan and Shuswap blossom at Communities in Bloom awards

District of Sicamous, City of Armstrong double winners at B.C. awards gala; Lumby also a winner

Internet speed testing implemented in the CSRD

Test results will be tracked to find areas where improvement is needed.

Sicamous Eagles lose two on the road

Despite late offensive surges, the Sicamous squad came up short in Spokane and the Beaver Valley.

What financial commitments do you want from candidates running for prime minister?

As the federal election quickly approaches, the Observer took to the streets… Continue reading

In photos: Magician entertains in downtown Salmon Arm

Children of Salmon Arm were treated to the wonders of magician Leif… Continue reading

VIDEO: A moment to remember during the World Lacrosse Men’s Indoor Championship in B.C.

Diego Hernandez Valenzuela’s team lost, but he felt like a winner Saturday

Former South Okanagan resident found dead in Alberta

Candace Deleeuw was reported missing Sept. 16

PHOTOS: Steller sea lion with plastic around neck rescued on Vancouver Island

Rescue staff determined the plastic band cut the protected animal’s neck approximately two inches

B.C. VIEWS: School officials join fact-free ‘climate strike’

Students, public get distorted picture of greenhouse gases

Latimer surveyed much of Summerland

Civil engineer was also responsible of community’s irrigation system

Caught on Camera: Boat catches fire at Okanagan marina

The cause of the fire is unknown at this time, no injuries were reported as a result of the blaze

Handgun crackdown, health spending and transit plans latest campaign promises

Friday was the end of a busy week on the campaign trail

B.C. woman photographs massive ant swarm on Abbotsford driveway

She asked what the ants were doing? The answer: war

Most Read