For the past 55 years, June Long has never failed to celebrate her birthday without her best friend, Ruby Farris. The two have celebrated their birthdays together every year since the mid-1940s. June and Ruby met in Los Angeles, Calif. in 1942. Both residents of Brady now, the relationship that their double-cousin husbands share ignited their everlasting friendship. Their birthday celebrations have never failed to reunite the two. Ruby’s birthday falls first, Sept. 4 followed by June’s which is Sept. 7. They first celebrated their birthdays together in 1946 in Brady. The celebration moved to the Fort Worth area from 1947 to 1976. In 1977, their birthday get-together moved back to Brady following the retirement of their husbands, Tony Long and Marvin Farris. They have continued to celebrate their birthdays in Brady since then. Some of the highlights of things they have done during their annual birthday celebration includes an annual gift exchange of small kitchen items. In the first years of the birthday parties, the ladies exchanged items that cost no more than 50 cents. Their gift exchange started out with kitchen gadgets (as they refer to them) because both ladies enjoyed cooking. Today they joke about the type of wrapping paper they used to wrap those gifts. “Ruby brought her gift in a brown bag once and said, ‘Here it is’Ruby-wrapped,'” said June. “We don’t even bother to wrap them now. We just put them in a brown bag.” The ladies did add that over the years it gets harder and harder to find that special kitchen gadget. “You don’t really know what to get after 55 years,” said Ruby. The ladies and their families have played miniature golf to celebrate their birthdays and have had numerous breakfasts, luncheons, dinners and picnics in honor of their special occasion. Ruby and her husband have two daughters, seven grandchildren and three great-grandchildren. June and her husband have two daughters, five grandchildren and five great-grandchildren. The two ladies do harbor one regret over the years of celebrating their birthdays together. They regret not having a picture taken at each birthday celebration highlighting the momentous occasion. The two ladies will be honored Sunday, Sept. 9 with a reception from 2-4 p.m. at the Brady National Bank community room. This year marks 80 for June and 82 for Ruby. June and Ruby’s daughters, hostesses for the birthday reception, cordially invite friends and family members to share in their joy and celebration.