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Sally Army stalwart Mary marks centenary in style

PUBLISHED: 17:28 28 April 2010 | UPDATED: 10:30 12 August 2010

A SALVATION Army officer who joined the organisation in 1932 has been celebrating her 100th birthday. Brigadier Mary Foster, who now lives in the Salvation Army s Rookstone care home, Lawrie Park Crescent, Sydenham, celebrated the milestone with family a

A SALVATION Army officer who joined the organisation in 1932 has been celebrating her 100th birthday.

Brigadier Mary Foster, who now lives in the Salvation Army's Rookstone care home, Lawrie Park Crescent, Sydenham, celebrated the milestone with family and friends on April 21.

Mayor of Bromley, Douglas Auld, visited the care home to pay tribute to the long-serving officer. Brigadier Foster, who lived in Thornton Heath, said: "The Salvation Army's been my life. I've lived the Army since I was a child.

"It's marvellous that God has spared me for so long. God's been very good to me."

Brigadier Foster led Salvation Army churches in Chelmsford, Bristol, Canterbury, Norwich and Grimsby before serving at the church and charity's national headquarters in London.

Her friends and family joined staff and residents of Rookstone care home to celebrate her birthday, singing The Salvation Army hymn O Boundless Salvation.

Mr Auld said: "Being present here today was an opportunity for me to wish Mary a very, very happy birthday and I feel quite humbled to be in her presence."

Lieutenant Colonel Anthony Cotterill, divisional commander of The Salvation Army's London South-East Division, said: "I'm staggered to be with someone who has been a Salvation Army officer for 78 years.

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