By Elizabeth Keys
STILLWATER, Okla. —
The first motion picture theater opened in Los Angeles the year Addie Steward was born in 1902. After turning 110-years-old on Nov. 8, she has far surpassed the 1902 average life expectancy in the United States of 47-years. She is believed to be the oldest living resident of Stillwater, turning 110 last week in the hospital, said her granddaughter, Michelle Abington.
“She has been in intensive care at Baptist Hospital in Oklahoma City,” Abington said. “The family has been going back and forth all week.”
A longtime former resident of Pawnee, she is the widow of the late Samuel Steward, who died in 1965. Steward has out-lived five of her six children.
She worked for a number of years as a housekeeper and she also was a midwife, delivering many children throughout the local area. As a member of Pawnee Methodist Church, she was Mother of the Church and church treasurer. She fondly remembers spending time with her friends on fishing trips and participating in various activities in the Senior Citizens’ Center in Pawnee.
Surviving the 1921 Tulsa Race Riots on Greenwood Street, she witnessed the destruction of many African-American owned homes and businesses including her mother’s, Mary Berry Ware, home and store. In a century, she’s seen a world of change from the first west-east transatlantic radio broadcast from the United States to Europe to the world wide web interlinking countries throughout the planet.
Her granddaughter did not have a time frame on Steward's hospital stay but those wishing to send her birthday greetings may mail messages to: Addie Steward, Intensive Care Patient Floor, Integris Baptist Medical Center, 3300 NW Expressway, Oklahoma City 73112.