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The elderly Michigan woman who decided to forgo cancer treatment and embark on a road trip across the United States celebrated her 91st birthday in Marietta, Georgia, on Thursday.
Known only as Norma, the newfound adventurer opted for the excursion with her son Tim, her daughter-in-law Ramie, and their poodle, Ringo, after she was diagnosed with uterine cancer in August. The diagnosis came just two days after her husband, Leo, died, and doctors told her the treatment would involve chemotherapy and radiation.
“I’m 90 years old,” she told her doctor, Fox 5 Atlanta reported. “I’m hitting the road.”
Since ditching assisted living and hopping in their motor home, Norma and her family have visited Yellowstone National Park, Disney, Mount Rushmore and the Grand Canyon, among other U.S. monuments and attractions. The family has been cataloguing their trip on the Facebook page Driving Miss Norma, which had more than 342,000 likes as of Friday afternoon.
On Thursday, Norma arrived at the historic Marietta Square donning a crown on her head, driving in with her family in a red, 1955 Chevrolet Bel Air, Fox 5 Atlanta reported. Dozens of people were there to greet her and wish her happy birthday.
“I don’t know what to say,” Norma told the news station. “It is overwhelming for sure.”
Norma and her family spent the winter in Florida, but next, they’re traveling northward along the East Coast, “chasing spring.”
“She’s blossoming,” her son Tim Bauerschmidt told Fox 5 Atlanta. “It took her 91 years to grow up.”