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Apple Valley man turns 100
Gus Jahnke keeps it simple, except for a waffle or two
APPLE VALLEY • Gus Jahnke turned 100 years old on Friday.
Like most of Jahnke's interests, he likes to keep life simple. Fishing, hiking, hunting "are still his favorite things," said Jahnke's granddaughter, Rene Holladay. And a special treat is going to Johnny D's diner to get a waffle with whipped cream and strawberries.
Jahnke grew up during the Great Depression and traveled all across the United States during his early years. Jobs such as learning how to pick fruit were some of the only things available for Jahnke and his brothers, all trying to make a living.
Having grown up on a farm in Illinois, Jahnke and his brothers were already familiar with the land and how to raise crops and livestock.
He and his wife, Frances, owned a gas station with a store and rental cottages in Wisconsin. The two were married nearly 75 years.
The Jahnkes came to California and Gus Jahnke worked as a pipe-fitter and moved up to business agent, then business manager of Pipe Fitters/Plumbers, Local Union 364 in Colton.
Jahnke spent several years in Colton, where he retired before moving to Spring Valley Lake.
Today, Jahnke’s travels have brought him to Merrill Gardens in Apple Valley, where he enjoys occasional visits from his five grandchildren, 11 great grandchildren, and five great-great grandchildren.
In fact, the next time you’re at your local diner, you just might see him, keeping it simple — and enjoying a waffle or two.
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