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Posted Wednesday, September 9th, 2020

Antonio Cardona of Morristown, who turned 102 on Aug. 26, was presented with a framed resolution by the Morris County Board of Freeholders in celebration of his longevity.

“He immigrated to America almost 50 years ago to build a new life and home for his family. He not only succeeded, but also has been blessed with longevity, surrounded by generations of children and grandchildren,” said Freeholder Tayfun Selen.

Freeholder Selen presents a resolution honoring Antonio Cardona for turning 102 years old.

Morris County Freeholder Selen Tayfun, right, chatted with Mr. Cardona of Morristown and his daughter, Myriam, as he presented a resolution honoring  his 102nd birthday.

He and Freeholder John Krickus delivered the resolution to Mr. Cardona at his Morristown home. They were joined by members of the Morris County Hispanic-American Chamber of Commerce, and were greeted by his daughter, Myriam.

“As someone who also immigrated to this great nation to start a new life, I admire his courage and optimism, and I wish him many more years of health and success,” Freeholder Selen said.

The freeholder, who became a successful businessman in Morris County after moving from Turkey, shared his experiences moving to a new land with Mr. Cardona, who was born in Colomiba. Freeholder Selen recounted how his first job was pumping gas. Mr. Cardona spoke of landing in the United States with only a dollar in his pocket.

Mr. Cardona and his daughter, Myriam, with Freeholders Selen and Krickus, and members of the Hispanic-American Chamber of Commerce: President Ralph Tejeda, President Emeritus Esperanza Porras-Field and Hope Field

(Right to left) Hispanic-American Chamber of Commerce members Ralph Tejeda, Esperanza Porras-Field and Hope Field with Freeholder Selen, Mr. Cardona, his daughter Myriam and Freeholder John Krickus

The event was one of many congratulations bestowed on Mr. Cardona in recent weeks. Friends, family members, local Morristown officials, Morris County sheriff officers, firefighters and neighbors honored him on his Aug. 26 birthday with caravan of cars that drove in front of his Morristown home.

The freeholder resolution adopted today recognizes him for: “Having the courage and optimism to start a new life for his family in a new land and for raising them to realize their own potential in life.”

Mr. Cardona was 56 years old when he moved to the United States. He had been living in Colombia, where he and his wife, Judith, had six daughters and three sons, until an economic crisis impacted his local business in 1972. He initially immigrated alone, settling in Morristown, before his wife and family eventually joined him.

He worked at Morristown Memorial Hospital before retiring, and lost his wife of 56 years in 2005. But Mr. Cardona now enjoys life as the patriarch of a family that includes 14 grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.