Brownstown woman celebrates 90 years


Turning 90 is quite an accomplishment, but Betty Londot of Brownstown is already thinking 10 years down the road.

"I look to be 100," she said. "I just take one day at a time."

On Monday morning, Londot gathered with friends and family at the Brownstown Senior Center to celebrate her 90th birthday. After a pitch-in dinner of fried chicken and all the trimmings, everyone gathered to sing "Happy Birthday" and lined up for cake and ice cream.

"I don’t feel any different," she said. "I don’t feel older. I do what I want to do, and I go where I want to go."

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Born Aug. 26, 1929, at home in Haleysburg in Washington County, she is the daughter of George E. Underwood and Mamie Spurgeon Underwood.

"I was born in the Depression days," she said.

Growing up in the country, Londot lived a simple but happy childhood. She attended school in a one-room schoolhouse that served 32 kids. 

"I was a country girl," she said.

After graduating from primary school, she attended high school in Salem.

She had five brothers, Charles "Bud," Oscar, Ralph, Glen "Dale" Butch and George Underwood, and one sister, Bessie Nolan, but she’s the only one still living, she said.

On March 23, 1946, at the age of 16, she married William "Bill" Londot in Salem, and they moved to Brownstown. They had four children, Ronnie, twins David and Daniel and Betty Sue; 12 grandchildren; and 21 great-grandchildren.

Three of her babies were in diapers all at the same time back in the days of cloth diapers.

"When they cried, I cried," she said. "I sat down and cried with them. I grew up with my kids, and I think that’s what helped. We had a good family."

She attended all of her sons’ sporting events when they were in high school, including a track meet where she was the only parent there.

"I remember I went to one all by myself. There wasn’t any other spectators from Brownstown there," she said.

She would follow the school bus to away events and would end up sitting with the boys.

"They got tired of sitting with me after they were done, so they got me a chair, and I sat down on the field with them," she said.

To be an active part of her daughter’s life, she served as the leader of her Girl Scout Brownie troop. The Londots taught the girls about primitive camping, Betty Sue Londot Baute said.

"We would camp out in our backyard," Baute said. "They would teach us fire building and how to pitch our tents by ourselves."

Betty was a stay-at-home mom until her children were older and then she decided to join the workforce.

"I worked at the shoe factory and Marion Kay and Seymour Electronics," she said.

While at Marion Kay, she made numismatic clocks, which the company sold.

"I helped in the other departments, too, whenever they needed me," she said.

Bill passed away March 25, 2008, at the age of 82.

"I was married for 62 years," she said. "And I’ve lived in Brownstown all this time."

To this day, Betty said she doesn’t rely on anyone to do things for her.

"I live by myself, and I take care of myself," she said. "I always make up my bed when I get up in the morning. I always said if you get your bed made, get things picked up and your dishes washed, you shouldn’t have to do anything else."

She washes her laundry once a week and shops once a month, she said.

Although she had to give up driving last year due to her vision, it hasn’t kept her from getting out and being social. She still goes on girls day out shopping days with her daughter and enjoys spending time with friends in Salem on Friday evenings.

She also plays euchre at the senior center in Brownstown during the week, an activity she has enjoyed for the past six years.

"I like the people and playing cards," she said. "It’s somewhere you can come and meet friends and you know everyone."

She used to play golf and square dance and traveled a lot after she and Bill retired, she said.

"I went to Denmark because I have a Danish daughter-in-law," she said. "I’ve been to San Domingo and Hawaii. David was in the Navy and was stationed in Hawaii, and Daniel was stationed in Germany and lived in Denmark for the job he had."

Although she doesn’t travel much anymore, Betty has grandchildren and great-grandchildren spread out all over the country, including Florida, Maryland, Michigan, New York, Washington and Texas.

"And Las Vegas," Betty said. "That’s where I’d like to go."

After her birthday party, Betty said she planned to go home and watch her favorite daytime television show, "Days of Our Lives."

"She’s watched that show ever since it started," said Bill Baute, Betty’s son-in-law.

"It started in 1965," Betty Sue Baute added.

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