113-year-old South Dakotan named ‘Centenarian of the Year’

South Dakota Health Care Association (SDHCA), in conjunction with KELOLAND Television, is honored to announce that Beryl Kapaun of Salem has been named the "2012 Centenarian of the Year." Beryl celebrated her 113th birthday in June.  This recognition is a four-peat for Beryl as she has remained the oldest living South Dakotan for the past four years earning the honor.

Beryl Kapaun

According to Century Club records, Beryl Kapaun, a current resident at the Golden LivingCenter in Salem, born June 4, 1899, is the oldest living South Dakotan!

Beryl lived on her own in an apartment until she was 104 years old. As a child, her family moved around the country frequently, as her mother had bronchial conditions that required moving to warmer climates during the harsh South Dakota winters.  Beryl graduated from Brookings High School and took business courses at Brookings State College and Sioux Falls Business College.  She worked in offices around the area and in Colorado as a stenographer for a large fruit-growing company.  She later returned to the family farm near Montrose to care for her parents, where she stayed until the 1990's when she then moved into Montrose.

Beryl credits her longevity to genes in the family, her clean living and never overeating at meals!  Beryl comments however that she is surprised that she has lived as long as she has because there were two times that stand out in her mind that she was given up for dead!  Once she had pleural pneumonia and fell into a deep sleep and her family thought she had died.  The other time was when she had something she calls "Slow Fever."  She was sick for so long that the doctor gave up on going out to see her!"

Although Beryl never married, she has many nieces and nephews.  She takes great pride in her accomplishment of being the oldest living South Dakotan.

"Congratulations Beryl, for over 113 years of contributions to so many lives," stated LuAnn Severson, Century Club Coordinator.  "A special SDHCA Centenarian of the Year certificate will be presented to Beryl for reaching this milestone and acknowledging our Centenarians have touched the lives of others for over 10 decades." 

The Century Club is a creation of the South Dakota Health Care Association and has recognized over 1,000 South Dakotans since its beginning in 1997.  Century Club sponsors created the club to recognize both the contributions and the years of these special individuals.

The Century Club is open to residents of South Dakota upon the celebration of his or her 100th birthday.  There are no dues and every inductee receives a specially designed certificate and membership card signed by sponsors.  Once a year, the current oldest living Century Club member is recognized as the "Centenarian of the Year."

You may submit names for the Century Club by visiting www.sdhca.org and downloading a Century Club Application or call LuAnn Severson, Century Club coordinator, at 1-800-952-3052. 

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