Rebecca Lashley, known widely as Eloise, was born on October 26, 1923, to Barbadians Joseph and Mathilda Lashley and was the only one in her family to be born in Guyana.
Her late parents came to Guyana with their daughters, (her elder sisters), Rhoda and Louise seeking employment opportunities in the former British colony.
There, they managed to find jobs on one of the sugar estates in the country as cane harvesters. Sometime later, Eloise’s father decided that he no longer wanted to spend the rest of his life in Guyana, and returned to Barbados where he passed away some years later.
Eloise married and was able to give birth to five children, four of whom are alive today. The ages of her children range from 81, 74, 70 and 59 years respectively.
Now living at Uitvlugt, West Coast Demerara, Eloise celebrated her 100th birthday three days ago.
With everything that she would have experienced, the centenarian took those lessons and taught her children good morals. She taught them how to be independent and self-sufficient. Although this was sometimes tough for her children to do, they obeyed nevertheless.
Eloise was able to complete her primary education and went on to learn the art of sewing and excelled as a seamstress; she made exceptional bridal gowns and a host of other pieces.
In addition to being a terrific seamstress, Eloise was also a housemaid for an overseer at the estate, where she was loved for her cooking and baking skills and gained popularity for making tasty custard blocks and icicles.
As another source of income, she washed and ironed other people’s clothes. Eloise, according to her loved ones, can be described as a hardworking and caring woman and despite the many difficulties life threw her way, she is a fighter, never a quitter.
Eloise has continued to live in the community of Uitvlugt, and is seen as the matriarch of the village.