- Faith & Family
One hundred years ago, on March 22nd, 1912, Essie Mae Young was born, the second of nine children in Camney, Alabama. One hundred years later, her family and friends are happy to report that the matriarch of the Young family is still living and is of sound mind and good health.
To celebrate her 100th birthday, her family hosted a celebration for Young at the local Omega Center on Saturday, March 31st and invited more than 200 guests to share in the festivities.
Young married her husband, Sam Young, on Feb. 24th, 1962 — they had one child, Sandra Dell Young.
Sandra, 59, says her mother always taught her the importance of keeping a clean house.
“Because you never know who you have to bring home, that’s what [my mother] always said,” Sandra recalled.
During her adult life, Young was able to help support her family working as a maid in South Florida. But she always made time for her faith and spiritual life. Originally a member of Mt. Tabor Missionary Baptist Church, Young later joined Antioch Missionary Baptist Church and regularly attended services for as long as she was able. She is still doing well, both mentally and physically and says he is enjoying her twilight years by taking it easy.
Once an “avid” baseball fan, among her favorite activities today is enjoying the cuisine of local fast food restaurants. She enjoys Wendy’s and Popeyes and “her appetite is humongous,” said Young’s son-in-law James Gardner.
However, Young has always understood the connection between following a healthy diet to remaining healthy and living a long life.
When asked what was the secret to her living so long, Young replied that it is “due to hard work” and “eating collard greens, butter beans and cornbread.”
By Kaila Heard