Emma Virginia Fife, Centenarian
June 2, 2018
Key to the City Recipient
Virginia Fife received the Key to the City award for becoming a centenarian. While working as a homemaker, Fife joined the service-oriented Elk Grove Rebekah Lodge in 1955. In 1966, Fife was part of the hospitality committee for a visit to the Elk Grove Odd Fellows Temple by Rebekah officials Maurine Presse and Fern McCrum. Fife was active in the Daughters of Utah Pioneers organization and was involved in a project to improve the Sloughhouse Pioneer Cemetery. Fife was born on March 3, 1917, in Hyrum, Utah, where she spent the earliest part of her life. She was the seventh of the 11 children of Charles and Agnes Unsworth, who raised their family as members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS). As a member of the church, she enjoyed singing in her ward's choir. In 1939, four years after graduating from high school in Hyrum, Virginia came to California with her friend, Clara Long. It was during the same year, on Dec. 16, that William and Virginia Fife were married in Reno. The Fife family were among the founding families of the Latter-day Saints Elk Grove Ward, and some of its first meetings were held in the Fifes' Bond Road home. William died on March 30, 1989, and in 2003, after 58 years of living on the ranch, Fife moved from her longtime home. The Fife family's ranch was subsequently replaced with about 60 homes. She enjoys mingling with other seniors at the Senior Center of Elk Grove on Sharkey Avenue. In addition to having five children, Fife had 11 grandchildren, 28 great-grandchildren and one great-great-grandchild.