Betty Reid Soskin, America’s Oldest Park Ranger, Retires at 100 – KQED – DC Initiative on Racial Equity
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An elderly woman sits holding a bouquet of flowers, as a little girl touches her face.

Betty Reid Soskin (left) with her family during a ceremony at the newly renamed Betty Reid Soskin Middle School in El Sobrante on her 100th birthday, on Sept. 22, 2021. (Beth LaBerge/KQED)

The nation’s oldest active park ranger is hanging up her Smokey hat at the age of 100.

Betty Reid Soskin retired Thursday from her job as an interpretative tour guide at the Rosie the Riveter WWII Home Front National Historical Park in Richmond, the National Park Service announced.

Soskin led tours at the site for more than 15 years, regularly drawing large crowds. She played a major role in helping to establish the park and museum, which honors the women who worked in factories during wartime.

As a guide, Soskin taught park visitors about the contributions of women and African Americans to the war effort, and about the experience of often overlooked Black hom


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