Three women in Washington, DC have just upped the “best friends for life” game. Lifelong best friends Gladys Butler, Ruth Hammett, and Bernice Underwood just celebrated their hundredth birthdays together and they’re serious #squadgoals.
The celebration took place on Saturday, where friends and family members gathered at Zion Baptist Church, the congregation the three friends attended since they were young. The late Leona Barnes, a fourth best friend, was also celebrated with the other women during the service, with a painting of her seated with her friends.
All four women were born in either June or July of 1916, and report being best friends for just as long. Butler, Hammett, Underwood, and Barnes met as children and “played jacks and hopscotch and jumped rope together.” They even had babies in the same year, 1933.
During the 90-minute ceremony, the women shared a video in which each of them discussed their lives thus far and offered advice to future generations. The overall message was clear: be respectful and don’t talk back. Noted! My mom used to say the same exact thing.
But among the personal photographs, memories, and videos of the women were birthday wishes from D.C Mayor Muriel Browser and Oprah Winfrey.
Winfrey — whose makeup artist is one of the church’s congregants — sent a video message that could easily be deemed the most exciting part of the ceremony. “The things you must’ve seen over the last century,” she mused. She concluded her message by wishing them “the grandest and greatest” birthday and ending the message with a “Hallelujah.”
Best. Birthday. Ever.