PHOENIX — Pictures of her past hang in honor of a woman who has seen quite a bit during her long life.
“Well, I never thought I’d live this long, I’m amazed myself,” said Audrey Matheson.
Most are amazed when they meet Audrey, who on Friday is celebrating her 100th birthday, a day she pictured mostly just relaxing quietly at home.
“They wanted me to celebrate to the hilt, so I guess that’s what we’re doing,” said Audrey.
Surrounded by friends and family, Audrey was in for more than she bargained for.
Born in 1922 and married for over 50 years, while she’s lived a long time, she’s the first to admit, she still doesn’t have all the answers.
“If I was good at advice, I would have taken it myself,” said Audrey with a laugh.
“Were you a troublemaker?” Asked reporter Cameron Polom.
“Oh yeah,” Audrey immediately responded.
That makes a lot of sense when you hear recently, what she told her caregiver regarding the one thing she’s always wanted to do.
“I asked her if there was anything she wanted to do before she died and she told me to ride in a red Corvette convertible,” said Nicki Reyes with Girl Friday. “So, I reached out to a local Corvette club to see if they could help make that happen.”
Little did Audrey know but she was in for quite a few firsts despite walking this Earth for a century, starting with getting a surprise visit from a Wallaby thanks to Dylan Capshaw Wildlife Foundation.
“This is a Kangaroo,” exclaimed Audrey petting the small Marsupial.
That was followed by a quick hello from a few local heroes when the Scottsdale Fire Department stopped by to wish her a happy birthday. Her friends saved the biggest surprise however for last. The east Valley Corvettes club heard about Audrey’s wish and Navy man Jim Dunkelberger was happy to oblige.
“Want to go for a ride?” asked Jim as he pulled up in a brand-new red Corvette.
Jim soon delivered a thrill ride to remember.
“She wanted to go fast,” said Jim with a laugh when they finished.
“She’s a wonderful little lady we just love her,” said one neighbor through tears.
“Just proud of her, she’s a maverick, she’s a maverick,” said another.
Thanks to the kindness of her community, her 100th birthday may just have been the best one yet.
“I’m a bit shaken up, it’s been quite a day,” said Audrey. “Thank you everyone so much. My heart is definitely full.”