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Magic of Aging

July 2008

by R. H. Carter

The Wakulla County Senior Citizens must continue to conduct fundraising events to generate enough funds to continue our level of service and address needs as they confront us.  “Christmas In July” is scheduled on July 23, 2008.  This is a $50 per plate luncheon accompanied by a silent auction of gift baskets and art by local artists.  Tickets for this event are available at the senior center.  They may also be purchased from Board, Staff and Volunteers.

{sidebar id=1}We are so pleased to announce that Charlie Barnes has agreed to serve as our guest speaker for this event.  This will add to the excitement of this event.  Charlie Barnes is the executive director and senior vice president of Seminole Boosters, Florida State University’s fundraising arm for athletics.  He graduated from FSU with a degree in Government; his wife Connie is also an FSU alumnus.  Charlie is a popular speaker and cheerleader for Florida State Seminole athletics.  He is the columnist for Unconquered, the quarterly magazine of Seminole Boosters, and a principal columnist for the University Alumni publication, The Florida State Times.  Charlie is also in demand as a master of ceremonies for many University and community events.

We encourage you to support this fundraiser.  We know that your support is needed and believe that you will sincerely enjoy this event.

Its always fun to write about an individual that participates in the center activities and enjoys life in a grand way.  Recently I had a lengthy discussion with Ms. Mary Randolph about her life and her experiences in the senior center.  Mary has lived her life in the Bethel Community of Wakulla County.  Her parents were Ellis Gavin and Ida (Smith) Gavin.  They raised four children and Mary was the second child born on Christmas Day, 1930.  She married Larry Randolph, Sr. in 1948.  They had seven children.  There were four girls, Hattie Mae, Helen, Ann and Kathy.  The three boys were Wilbur, Larry Jr. and Rueben.  Hattie Mae married Sam McGrew from Mayo.  Their son, Sam McGrew was a well-known football player at Wakulla High and later became a football star as a line backer at Florida State.

Mary’s discussion was all about family and work.  Her husband drove trucks and worked in timber and pulpwood.  She has driven buses for tobacco fields in Havana, the Senior Citizens Center and the Wakulla County Schools.  She also provided in-home services for the senior center.  She worked in the Wakulla Springs restaurant and in the fields picking peas and hoeing peanuts and corn.  She explained how hard she worked and never sat down.  She retired from driving a school bus.

Mary is well known as the political kingpin of the Bethel Community.  While she was working to raise her family, she was busy working for candidates that she believed would best serve her county.  She is now retired and enjoys relaxing and taking time to sit and talk with others.  Her visits to the senior center brings her in contact with new people and keeps her mind sharp with a new level of social interaction. 

She is now enjoying a slower pace in her life but she still pays close attention to the management of Wakulla County and maintains a keen interest in our political environment.  We have been close friends for many years and I have enjoyed our discussions and friendship.  I will always be deeply indebted to her for the wisdom and advice that she has shared with me.

This article originally published on June 16, 2008.

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