Pueblo County, Colorado

Pueblo Centanarians
Arta Booth

Contributed by Karen Mitchell
100 years wise
Pueblo Chieftain July 8, 2012
Author: Anthony A. Mestas, The Pueblo Chieftain, Colo.

July 08--Lydia Ristow grinned and threw her arms in the air as she recalled the time before state highways were constructed and when people went from using horse-drawn buggies to driving cars.
Sitting at home on a comfy couch Saturday she remembered when the post office was one of the only ways to communicate and when her family first got a telephone.
"A lot has changed over the years and most of it is good, except the politicians," she said shaking her fist and laughing.
Ristow turns 100 years old today and although this cyber centenarian loves to talk about the past, she also delved into the present and the future.
Ristow said she is fascinated with communication technology the way it is today -- especially with Facebook and email. "We are in a computer age now and I'd like to know what they possibly could come up with next. It seems like everything is invented that could be invented. What the heck are the next hundred years going to be like?" "There's so much going on. It's quite amazing and I like that email stuff."
Lydia Ristow Pueblo West centenarian "I think there was a shock when radios came along. Most religious groups figured they were the work of the devil. They were afraid of it."
Ristow, who has 22 grandchildren, 32 great-grandchildren and numerous great-greatgrandchildren and even a few great-great-great-grandchildren, said she enjoys Facebook because, "It's so darn easy to communicate with people in my family."
She said automobiles have come a long way from the Ford her father purchased for $450 in 1932.
Ristow was born in Iowa and lived most of her life in Minnesota and California. She moved to Pueblo with her son Harold
Ristow and grandson Tommy Ristow in 1993. They now live in Pueblo West.
She summed up the reason she has lived so long in one sentence: "Hard work and lots of it," she said. Ristow's hard work and determination helped her graduate from Gardena High School in in Gardena, Calif., when she was 68 years old. "Education is the most important thing of all. None of us had a chance for education when I was a girl because we had to pay for high school books and everything," Ristow said. "Today everyone is entitled to some form of education and that is a good thing."
She worked as a real estate agent and in factories throughout her life. Ristow's family has a history of longevity. One of her six sisters lived to be 101 and three others are in their 90s.
Their mother died when she was 93.
Ristow's daughter, Shirley Hodson and son-in-law Dave Hodson, arrived from California to celebrate her birthday Saturday. Other family members are coming in today, Ristow said.
"It's been a wonderful life in many aspects. There also was a lot of sadness.
We have a wonderful world, we just need to make a few changes and I think when a woman becomes president we will do that," she said with a laugh.

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