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Happy Birthday, Millie! East Harlem Resident Turns 109

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) - A historic birthday was celebrated in New York City Friday.

Millie Berry remembers what life was like here a long time ago.

Ms. Berry is no stranger to the "Happy Birthday" song, or the cake.

"I had a good life. Good children. Went every place. No aches, no pains. God is good," she told CBS2's Clark Fouraker.

Balloons, flowers and gifts surrounded her as she celebrated her 109th birthday at the ArchCare at Terence Cardinal Cooke Health Care Center nursing home.

Ms. Berry was born in 1909 and is known for her love of travel and her children.

"She's always very chipper. And even though she doesn't hear very well, she seems to know what's going on," said her daughter Dorothy Lonoe. "I tell her she must be reading lips."

Friends and family gathered to celebrate. Her 109 years have given Ms. Berry a deep history of New York.

What's her key to living a long, happy life?

"Take care of yourself. All this drinking and smoking, we never had all this trouble years ago," Ms. Berry said. "You can't even walk the streets now."

"She's told us stories about the Triborough Bridge being built. She's also told us stories about when she worked in the factory during the war," said her granddaughter Yvette.

Assemblyman Robert Rodriguez and State Senator Jamaal Bailey sent proclamations to recognize the milestone birthday.

"She's very smart, very witty," said her neighbor Ronald Smith. "You know, she knows what's going on around her."

She even invited Fouraker to next year's celebration, which she says she plans to be around for.

Ms. Berry still spends lots of time with her daughters and grandchildren. She goes to church every Sunday and still reads the paper every morning, without glasses.

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