Self on her 110th birthday
|Birth:||17 August 1909|
Hamilton, Montana, United States
|Age:||111 years, 35 days|
Self was born in Hamilton, Montana, United States, on 17 August 1909. Her parents were Walter L. Chesnutt (1855–1933) and Susan Alvina Campbell Chesnutt (1869–1949). Self was the youngest of nine siblings. The oldest seven children died in their 60s and 70s. Her father came from North Carolina with nine children and took a ranch up in Hamilton. She came to Missoula as a teenager to work as the first female nurse's aide at the Northern Pacific Hospital. Later employers included Eddy's Bakery, the Press Radio Club, and, during World War II, an aircraft parts factory in Bremerton, Washington.
Self married three times. Her second husband had the surname Mongar. Her third and last husband was Kenneth R Self (1913–2001), and they were married on 20 May 1972. They were married for 29 years, and for 20 years they traveled to Arizona, Florida and Alaska in their camper. She was able to drive well in her 90s. On her 100th birthday, Self went on her first ride on a Harley-Davidson motorcycle.
Self is a cancer survivor, having had a mastectomy at the age 94, but she opted for no further treatment following the surgery and, when none of the predicted pain came later, she stoped using the pills her doctor had given her for. Her brother, Joseph “Joe” Chesnutt, passed away in 2007 at the age of 101. In 2017, she lived with her granddaughter, Diane Gunter, and has lived with her since 2001. Her daughter, Shirley Gunter, was alive in 2018 at the age of 86. She celebrated her 110th birthday in August 2019.
Self currently lives in Missoula, Montana, United States at the age of 111 years, 35 days.
- Kenneth R Self FindAGrave
- Joseph “Joe” Chesnutt FindAGrave
- Mother (102), daughter (80) take resort's decades-old offer of free stay The Billings Gazette, 1 July 2012
- Missoula’s 108-year-old Helen Self one of several western Montana Centenarians to be honored dphhs - Montana.gov, 5 September 2017
- Orange juice and raw liver? It worked for Missoula's Helen Self, now 110 Missoulian, 18 August 2019