Carli Berry/Capital News                                Fernande Bertrand celebrated her 100th birthday, Saturday Jan. 27.

Carli Berry/Capital News Fernande Bertrand celebrated her 100th birthday, Saturday Jan. 27.

100 year old shares secret to longevity

Kelowna resident Fernande Bertrand celebrated her 100th birthday Saturday

Sex, dancing and love are the key ingredients to a long life, says a Kelowna woman who celebrated her 100th birthday Saturday.

“In a way, I think 100-years-old is living too long — it’s OK to live that way if you’re rich and very healthy, otherwise it’s the pits,” said Fernande Bertrand, who lives at The Dorchester in Kelowna.

“But maybe, I lived that long because maybe I did it my way,” she said. “Everything I did in my life I did with fun and love and joy. Every day I was happy, I love life, I love children, I love family.”

To Bertrand, sex is the number one secret to longevity.

“I don’t know how people do it, have no love and no sex in their life… if you don’t like one boyfriend you get another one if you don’t like one husband then get another one,” she said.

Bertrand has always been energetic, said granddaughter Lisa Calvert.

“I was 89 years old when I moved to Quebec City for five months and there was a big dance and music and everything,” said Bertrand.

She danced until early in the morning.

Living in Ottawa for most of her life, she was married to George Bertrand for 30 years and had six children. A resident of Kelowna for more than 20 years, Bertrand was born in Notre-Dame-de-la-Salette, Quebec in 1918 and worked as a nanny for rich politicians in the ‘60s in Ottawa. She also volunteered with Children’s Aid Society, caring for babies.

“I loved to give love and get love, I think in life that’s really the thing. In life that’s how it is, I don’t care if it’s sexually or not,” she said.

Bertrand moved to the Central Okanagan in the 1990s for the warmer climate and to be with family. She volunteered at the Seniors Outreach for more than 10 years.

“She helped older people and she was already in her ‘80s,” said daughter Lucy Anderson. “She was basically a teenage 80-year-old.”

Bertrand also travelled to Spain for four or five months to meet her companion after her husband passed.

“We’d dance on the street when I think of that… we were so free,” said Bertrand “I had so much energy I didn’t know what to do with it… If I don’t spend that with dancing, I’d spent it with some boyfriend.”

They kept each other young and had a good time together, said her son Marcel Bertrand.

She was also active in the Kelowna community. Bertrand admired Kelowna’s former mayor Walter Grey, who installed a bus stop for her after she phoned his office.

“He took time for me and called me back and told me the (stop) was going to be delayed, as if I was someone very important,” she said.

Unafraid of controversy, she wrote letters to the newspapers in Kelowna.

“I usually talk, express myself the way I think… honesty, maybe that’s why they published (them),” she said.

Bertrand’s family, many of whom live in the Central Okanagan, attended her birthday, Jan. 27

To report a typo, email: edit@kelownacapnews.com.


@carliberry_
carli.berry@kelownacapnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

(Contributed)
Collision slows rush hour traffic in Kelowna

Expect delays at K.L.O. Road and Richter Street on your commute Tuesday evening

A conceptual render of the proposed building at 955 Manhattan Drive. (Contributed)
Height not wanted on Kelowna’s Manhattan Drive

City staff said proposed five-storey building poses challenges

A for sale sign is shown in by new homes in Beckwith, Ont., just outside Ottawa, on Wednesday, Jan. 11, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Thompson-Okanagan population grew despite COVID-19: report

The Chartered Professional Accountants of BC said there are 8,462 new residents in the region

Kelowna General Hospital. (File photo)
COVID-19 outbreak at Kelowna General Hospital declared over

Three people tested positive for the virus — two patients and one staff — one of whom died

A crash at the intersection of Harvey Avenue and Leckie Road on June 15. (Amandalina Letterio/Capital News)
Traffic stalled by Harvey Avenue crash in Kelowna

One lane is open as crews clean up after crash at Harvey Avenue and Leckie Road

People watch a car burn during a riot following game 7 of the NHL Stanley Cup final in downtown Vancouver, B.C., in this June 15, 2011 photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Geoff Howe
10 years ago: Where were you during the 2011 Vancouver Stanley Cup Riots?

Smashed-in storefronts, looting, garbage can fires and overturned cars some of the damage remembered today

Vernon-Monashee NDP MLA Harwinder Sandhu supported a motion in the B.C. legislature for Canada to create a national Indigenous History month Monday, June 13, 2021. (Contributed)
Canada needs a national Indigenous History Month, Vernon MLA agrees

Harwinder Sandhu supports motion to recognize June as month to advance reconciliation efforts with First Nations

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

(Facebook)
New trial date set for Penticton beach attacker’s triple assault charges

May trial was delayed after Crown witnesses failed to show up

Orange ribbons are tied to the fence outside Vernon’s Gateway Homeless Shelter on 33rd Street. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)
POLL: Low-key Canada Day in the works for Vernon

Councillor calling for Indigenous recognition for 2022

A conceptual design of Vernon’s new Active Living Centre, which will go to referendum Oct. 15, 2022. (Rendering)
Active living centre 2022 referendum planned in Vernon

City hoping to get Coldstream and Areas B and C back on board

Closure of the 2900 block of 30th Avenue will allow restaurants and other businesses to extend their patios onto the street. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)
Green light given to downtown Vernon road closure

Single block of 30th Avenue to close over summer months to boost business

Graduating Grade 12 student Savannah Lamb has been awarded an approximate $40,000 scholarship from the Beedie Luminaries foundation. (Contributed)
Dedicated Salmon Arm student earns scholarship to pursue post-secondary education

Savannah Lamb is graduating from Salmon Arm Secondary with a $40,000 scholarship

Most Read