Coronavirus: No Dr. Oz this year, but Florida woman marks 106th birthday with drive-by party
PALM BEACH GARDENS - It would be difficult to top a visit from Dr. Oz as a birthday surprise, but HarborChase assisted living community came very close.
Because of visitation restrictions put in place amid the novel coronavirus pandemic, the community celebrated resident Madelyn Morocco’s 106th birthday Friday in a unique way.
The Pennsylvania native, who has lived at HarborChase of Palm Beach Gardens since it opened 2½ years ago, was treated to a birthday car parade and celebration that included friends, family and staff members.
More than 50 people took part in the event, which included balloons, signs, songs, and a birthday serenade.
“We were excited and honored to host Madelyn’s 106th birthday,” said Anthony Polito, Executive Director of HarborChase of Palm Beach Gardens. “She’s a wonderful and treasured member of our family here at HarborChase. She is incredibly positive and friendly, and is very much adored by all who know her.”
Dr. Oz, a cardiothoracic surgeon and television personality who visited the Palm Beach Gardens community last spring as part of “National Hugging Day,” was unable to return this year because of coronavirus, the facility said.
But Morocco, who lives at HarborChase with her pet parakeet, Chipper, received well-wishes from dozens of friends, family members and HarborChase staff.
She sat outside the facility during her birthday car parade, wearing a crown, sash and pink shirt that read, “Birthday Queen.” She held flowers in her arms.
“What a wonderful surprise it was to see all of my family,” Morocco said.
Morocco’s two nieces, Diana and Carol, live nearby and helped plan her birthday bash.
At 106, Morocco is HarborChase’s oldest resident, the community said.
She has a younger sister, Julia, who is 103 and lives in Pennsylvania.
Madelyn Morocco, who was born and raised in Mayfield, Penn., and worked for a company that made silverware, keeps busy with arts and crafts, sewing, watching Western movies, and listening to Perry Como, the facility said.
She ends each day with cookies and milk.
For more information:
– Florida Department of Health coronavirus web page
– CDC coronavirus web page
– Florida DOH coronavirus hotline (8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday-Friday) is 866-779-6121 or email COVIDfirstname.lastname@example.org
This story originally published to palmbeachpost.com, and was shared to other Florida newspapers in the new Gannett Media network.