Clarence Silva celebrated his 100th birthday on Saturday.
He officially becomes a centenarian this Friday. But the weekend prior made it possible for friends, family, and even a few dignitaries to share in this special celebration.
Mayor Gary Singh along with Councilman Mike Morowit presented Silva with the City of Manteca Certificate of Recognition for achieving “an extraordinary milestone” and for his years of service in the U.S. Army. More on that.
According to his daughter, Patricia Riehs, about 50 were in attendance for Silva’s 100th birthday event held at the Woodbridge by Del Webb home – they’ve been part of the active adult community in Manteca for the past 8 ½ years.
In recent years, Silva would ride his scooter to the Del Webb baseball softball field to take in a few games. His daughter credits his longevity to his stubbornness along with abstaining from alcohol. “Dad was never a drinker,” Riehs said.
Silva also took fish oil as supplement to his diet.
He enjoyed bowling, and played until he was 90. Silva rolled numerous perfect 300 games coupled with his fair share of 600 series in league play.
He’s a product of what’s coined as “The Greatest Generation.”
They’re the ones born in U.S. between 1900 and 1925 – he was born on March 31, 1923 in Hayward – living during The Great Depression and with many having fought in World War II.
Clarence Silva, who was raised in the Bay Area, was drafted to serve his country shortly after marrying Gwen Anderson on March 22, 1942.
He saw plenty of action against the Axis power and made it to Germany at the time of Adolph Hitler’s fall and demise.
Silva spent three months in Berlin, working WWII vet services.
“We also want to thank Mr. Silva for his years of service in the U.S. Army during World War II – May his celebration be a joyful reminder of a lifetime of fond memories,” said Singh.
After serving his country, Clarence Silva returned to Hayward. It was there that he operated Silva’s Mushroom Farm, from the late 1940s through the ‘50s.
He later found employment at Western Electric in San Leandro, retiring from there after 32 years on the job.
His immediate family consists of Ron Silva, Patricia Riehs, Tom Silva, Kathy Fazekas, and Tim Silva.
He also has 11 grandchildren and 14 great grandchildren.
Clarence Silva, in addition, welcomed one more birthday gift this week – that’s the arrival of his great-great granddaughter Stella Rae, who was born on Tuesday.