Ruby Richards hits another milestone
May 7, 2010
Ruby Richards hits another milestone

Ruby Richards, of Calder, one of St.Vincent and the Grenadines’ few centenarians, has achieved another milestone.{{more}}

The matriarch of the Richards family of Calder, Bonhomme and Victoria Village celebrated her 103rd birthday on Sunday, May 2, 2010.

The mother of nine children, seven girls and two boys, celebrated the special occasion at her home with a daughter, grandchildren, and great grandchildren. Daughter Joyce is deceased, but Anita, Mercil, Mariel, Herlen, Lorna, Marian, Hamilton, and Benisford are alive.

Sharing the secrets to a long life, Ruby told the gathering she had a daily diet of cooked breadfruit and bananas, green peas, and chicken.

“I like chicken, and robin, too,” Ruby said, chuckling.

When told that SEARCHLIGHT was there to take her photo, Ruby in a jovial mood stated: “That’s very nice.”

The gathering sang several songs and choruses, including ‘Thanks Thanks’, ‘Thank You Lord’, ‘Bless the Lord’, ‘God is good’ and ‘My Lord is Able’.

The celebration was led by Megan Andrews, one of Ruby’s granddaughters.

Pastor Brent St.Jean, Head of the South Eastern District of Seventh Day Adventists, offered prayers to God for the long life granted to Ruby.

“You have gone through a lot. You have made it to 103 years. You have seen the good, you have seen the bad, you have seen the ugly. You have seen presidents come, you have seen presidents go, prime ministers come, prime ministers go, political parties come, political parties go…but God still have you here,” said St.Jean, adding that God has truly blessed Ruby with long life.

He added: “What makes me so happy when I got here this afternoon is that you are not only 103 years old, but you can understand and you can speak. Your mind is working very well.”

St. Jean said many people have not attained the milestone of 103, yet they have to be carried by others where ever they go.

“They cannot speak, they cannot say anything for themselves, they are senile, they don’t know anything, but God has protected your mind. Not only your health, physically, but God has also blessed your mind and you are still able to give wisdom to those who are younger than you are,” said St. Jean.

Before closing his presentation the pastor expressed the desire that Ruby would live to see many more healthy years.

“It’s one thing to say many more years, but if you haven’t got healthy years you can be miserable,” said St.Jean.

Ruby’s great-grandson Duane Andrews also entertained the gathering with his violin.

In an interview with SEARCHLIGHT on Tuesday, May 5, 2009, Ruby spoke of the days when she worked as a labourer on the Argyle Estate and on farm lands in Mt. Pleasant and Calder.

She was born in Victoria Village to Laty Nelson-Richards and Jim Richards and grew up in the community of Bonhomme. She had three brothers and five sisters. She is the only one of her siblings still alive.

Her husband was the late James ‘Baja’ Richards of Calder who passed away in 1988.

Ruby told SEARCHLIGHT that she was raised a Methodist, but later joined the Spiritual Baptist faith and has remained dedicated to that denomination.

On Sunday, Ruby shook as a true Spiritual Baptist when her loved ones sang the song “What a Friend We Have in Jesus.”.