On Friday, February 17, 2017, Premier Kathleen Wynne paid a visit to three remarkable women who will be turning 100 this year. They all live in Suomi-Koti, the Toronto Finnish-Canadian Seniors Centre on Eglinton near Laird, just steps away from Wynne’s constituency office as MPP for Don Valley West.
The three centenarians are Aili Kukkonen, whose birthday is March 10, Rauha Salonen, whose birthday is December 16, and Benita Kopamees, whose birthday is December 29. Each woman was pleased and surprised to receive a visit from Wynne, who presented them with a small potted chrysanthemum and framed certificates congratulating them on reaching this milestone, and wishing them a celebration that is “a joyful reminder of a century of living life right.”
Premier Wynne, who spent several minutes chatting with each woman and many other residents, stated that she is always happy to carve time out of her busy schedule “so that I don’t lose touch with my constituents and maintain my connection with them” by helping them to celebrate significant events.
Two of the honourees, Aili and Rauha, were born in Finland, and Benita in Estonia. All are very happy with Suomi-Koti, its many activities and the sense of community there.
We will write more about their long and rewarding lives in an upcoming issue of Leaside Life.