By Lara Alexander
This week, friends and family gathered to celebrate the 105th birthday of long-time Edmonds resident Hulda Humola. Ms. Humola was born on Nov. 5, 1906 in Meeker County, Minn., to immigrants parents from Finland. She was one of eight children, seven of whom lived into their 80s and 90s.
Ms. Humola began her education in a one-room country school in Minnesota. She went on to earn a bachelor of science degree in nursing and a bachelor of arts degree in social work from the University of Minnesota. Later, she studied political science at the University of Chicago, writing a masters thesis on the Labor Party during the 1930s.
World War II interrupted her educational pursuits at the University of Chicago but not her interest in politics and opportunities for women. Friends said she has been a life-long activist and champion for women’s issues. She enjoyed a career in nursing, social work and child welfare in California and Oregon before settling in Edmonds, where she has lived for more than 60 years.
An independent woman, Ms. Humola never married or had children. Besides her advanced education and long career, she counted a road trip to Alaska on the Old Al-Can Highway as one of her major accomplishments.
Attending Ms. Humola’s celebration were relatives from Minnesota — niece and goddaughter Geraldine Giese and husband David, nephew Roger Humola and wife Mary Ann, and grand-nephew Jon Ruopsa, plus local friends Matt Hendricks, Marge and Ray Martin, Marcia and Don Patience and Sunny and Mike Strong.