Loraine Luyten on her 103rd birthday.

By Bella Ferretti

103 years of life full of experiences, learning and lots of stories is worth celebrating. Riverview resident Loraine Luyten celebrated her 103rd birthday on June 21 surrounded by family and friends while enjoying her favorite dessert: red velvet and carrot cake.

Luyten was born in Upstate New York in 1920 alongside her three older siblings. From an early age, Luyten was drawn to creativity, such as a passion for music, playing the piano and hairdressing. She led a successful career in hairdressing and even went on to open her own cosmetology school in St. Petersburg called Loraine’s Hairstyling Academy. This school is still up and running today with specializations in beauty school, nail school, spa, skin care and massage therapy. Her institution has even been recognized locally, nationally and internationally for vocational career education since 1966.

As you may be wondering how she stays so young, Luyten stated that she keeps a positive attitude, does her daily exercises and regularly plays solitaire on her computer. She also mentioned her favorite that she had lived in were the 40s and 50s because her kids were still young, and she could continue to work in her at-home salon.

Luyten radiates positivity, and those who have the pleasure of knowing her have said nothing but great things.

“Everybody says she is amazing, and although she has her ups and her downs, she has been able to get over any illness,” said her daughter, Ann Marden, age 76.

Marden believes that the secret to her mother’s longevity is her constant healthy lifestyle, as well as the heart bypass that she had at age 83. Luyten has always taught her daughter that it is better to keep quiet when you do not agree with something rather than trying to prove yourself.

Since moving into The Bridges Retirement Community in 2011, she has had an impact on those around her.

“In the 10-plus years I have known Loraine, she maintains such a positive attitude regardless of circumstances or what life gives her,” said Janet Noah, director of community relations at The Bridges.

Luyten is full of life and is a positive spirit who has continued to celebrate these milestones year after year. The Bridges is located at 11202 Dewhurst Dr. in Riverview.

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