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Legendary Cerritos Resident Celebrates 99th Birthday

MARCELLA KROUPA MCMAHON celebrated 99 years, and relishes that she was born in December. “It is the best month to celebrate a birthday, everything is always so decorated for the holidays, plus I get to wear my favorite colors – green and red!”


Long time Cerritos resident, Marcella Kroupa McMahon [Marcy] celebrated her 99th birthday this month. Next year she will join the honorary status of Centurion, eagerly waiting to receive a telephone call from the president. Marcy is one out of 50,000 Cerritos residents to attain such an honor, with the older two being 101 and 103.

 Marcy was born in 1920 in Minnesota, graduated from the Twin Cities College and moved to Southern California. She married Ray McMahon in 1940 who was a World War II Marine veteran. Her parents Tillie Worshek and Frank Kroupa were both from Southern Minnesota and were born in the late 1800’s. Her parents were both immigrants from Czech- Bohemia. 

 “December is the absolute best month to celebrate a birthday” she said, “everything is always so decorated for the holidays, plus I get to wear my favorite colors – green and red!” As a December baby she says “I never felt deprived about getting birthday presents, because the whole world gets to celebrate with me!”

“I have owned three homes in my lifetime,” said Marcy, ”and each one I purchased in December, because it is such a lovely month, after all!” Her late husband of almost 60 years bought their first Honeymoon model home in Downey during the 1940’s.  

Later on they moved to an exclusive executive home in South Bay Palos Verdes and later retired and downsized to their small garden cottage compound in Cerritos.  The two enjoyed traveling in their RV and loved to create the absolutely enchanting garden that has some plants that are over 50 years old and still thriving

 Staying active my pruning and replanting helps to keep Marcy moving and can be seen in her hat and fancy garden gloves every day. She keeps her mind sharp by playing Kings in the Corner, a Midwestern snappy card game that feels like everybody’s playing a single solitaire game, but there’s only one winner. She is a parishioner of St. Hedwig’s in Rossmoor and a former GUILD attendee of Our Lady of Perpetual Help, St. Raymond’s, St. Lawrence Martyr and St. John Fisher Catholic Churches.

Marcy celebrated this last double digit her birthday, with her two sons and her dearest fur-baby Coco. Relatives flew in to celebrate ‘to the ninety nines’ with a formal dinner party that even Gatsby would be envious of.  “I got to divulge in my favorite dessert ‘Hello Dollies’, they were seven layers of chocolate deliciousness,” laughed Marcy, “I was even a little bit naughty and imbibed with a cranberry liqueur. I’ll save the candle for next year – all 100 of them!”

After 99 years she says she is still waiting to get that beautiful red car with a big bow delivered to her driveway on Christmas morning. “This has always been a dream of mine. Perhaps this article will find its way to the North Pole and Santa will have his reindeer deliver one!”

Marcy says she doesn’t want to get married again but says she misses having a companion that enjoys dry Gimlets, melting candles, cuckoo clocks and orchids.  She still loves French Art and long Sunday drives. “Perhaps I will finish my memoirs in time for my 100th birthday.”

  • Ken n Jim McMahon says:

    Special thanks to all the neighbors n friends, who dropped off birthday cards- letters, phone calls, e-mails and vendors who sent out gift certificate cards and the floral arrangement.

    Ken n Jim McMahon