Woman Who’s Been Hauling Lobster Traps For Nearly a Century Celebrates Her 103rd Birthday

Virginia Oliver, who lives in Rockland, Maine, first began lobstering when she was just 8 years old after going to sea with her father and older brother. She was keen to continue the family tradition and now, 95 years later, she has become something of a celebrity in her hometown. Her unwavering commitment has also earned her the affectionate nickname of “Lobster Lady.” Virginia, who was one of the only females in the industry at the time, married fellow fisherman Max Oliver and the couple worked side-by-side for 61 years before he passed away in 2006. Virginia, who has 4 children and 2 grandchildren, now works alongside her 80-year-old son, Max Jr. Their routine involves getting up at 3:30 a.m. to maintain their 400 lobster traps, and Virginia doesn’t shy away from hard work. She pilots the boat, hauls traps, measures the lobsters, and bands their claws. While she’s never been seasick, she does admit that she’s been nipped on several occasions. Virginia, who cooks dinner every Saturday for her children — making her famous traditional New England dish of biscuits and baked beans — shows no signs of slowing down. As for the reason for her longevity, Virginia says, “You have to keep moving."