Cape’s oldest twins celebrate 90th birthday

Marie Wenzel and Elizabeth Hans in their younger years.

With family and friends by their side, the Cape’s oldest twins celebrated their milestone 90th birthday on Friday July 14.

Marie Wentzel of Grassy Park and Elizabeth Hans of Elim in the Overberg, the youngest and only surviving children out of 10 children, said they were privileged and blessed to not only have reached 90 but to be able to share it with each other.

Ms Wentzel, who is the older of the twins, was born just a minute before her sister and is currently in a wheelchair, but was in good spirits about their milestone birthday.

“I feel very happy that I can celebrate my birthday with my sister by my side and that we can have the day with our families,” said Ms Wentzel.

She has 11 children, 26 grandchildren and 18 great-grandchildren.

The twins lived in Elim before coming to Cape Town to look
for work. They were both au
pairs.

“I feel so grateful and I can only thank our heavenly Father for the blessings and grace He poured out on us,” Ms Hans said.

She became emotional when she spoke about her husband and children.

“I lost my husband a year ago and my son a month ago but I am still very grateful for the grace God has bestowed on my life. I believe we reached 90 because we put our trust in the Lord and if you stay active, you will live a long life,” she said

Ms Hans has two surviving children, four grandchildren and one great-grandchildren.

The two were born on the farm, Sondagskloof, near Stanford in the Overberg district.

Although the two live far from each other, they try to see each other, as often as possible.

“My sister is so busy with her big family that she sometimes forget to about me, but I understand and we try to speak and see each other as often as possible,” said Ms Hans, joking.

Julian Hans, eldest son of Ms Hans, said the family were honoured to celebrate with his mother and aunt. “We’re very happy that we can celebrate their 90th birthday with them and
that both families can come together to honour them,” he said.

Frank Wentzel, third youngest of Ms Wenzel’s 11 children, said both his mother and aunt were sterling examples for their families. “They are very humble and till this day we as children and the grandchildren take a leaf out of their book and try to lead
by their example,” said Mr Wentzel.