Woman Celebrates 100th Birthday With Her Adopted Family by Her Side

Geneva Alderink Vander Vliet’s celebrated her 100th birthday this week with five generations of her family. Vander Vilet's story is unique because the five generations of her family are from children whom she adopted. It’s a testament to a long life that her adopted children say has been spent giving — to friends, family and anyone she met who needed help.

Born on Oct. 12, 1910, in Holland, she grew up so long ago that the city sewer lines didn’t extend out to her parent’s home. Still self-aware and with a remarkably well-preserved beauty, her memory has started to fade. But she’s seen a lot of change in her life, from the advent of radio broadcasts to the Internet.

In 1935, she married John Vander Vliet and the two decided to adopt two premature baby boy twins, Dan and Dave, who each required constant care. She didn’t want to adopt one and separate the twins, her children said. Today some of her five grandchildren, 13 great-grandchildren and one great-great grandchild, have now adopted children of their own. For more, read the story


Robert W. Carter, Jr. is a Virginia attorney whose law practice is dedicated to protecting the rights of the victims of nursing home and assisted living neglect and abuse in Richmond, Roanoke, Norfolk, Lynchburg, Danville, Charlottesville, and across Virginia.

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