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The Clarks 64 years and counting

Family and friends will celebrate July 4

Gigi Tinsley | 6/26/2014, 9 a.m.
The Clarks renewing their vows with Bishop Jenkins officiating at their 50th year anniversary.

Mattie Jordan, 81, the lovely daughter of Gertrude P. and Robert Jordan, was only 17 years-old, when she fell in love with the tall, dark and handsome, 25 years-old Jimmie, the son of Minnie and Isaac Clark. They fell in love at a church they both attended in Vienna, Dooley County, GA.

After a period of only seeing each other at church, Jimmie and Mattie decided they wanted to spend the rest of their lives together in Holy matrimony. Jimmie, as all properly reared young men did at that time, went to Mattie’s father “to ask for her hand in marriage.” Because of her age, her father said, “No” on five different occasions.

Clark, presently 89, still standing tall and good-looking, smiled and confirmed what his lovely, elegant, devoted, wife said about him. “He was an aggressive and determined man then and still is, so we decided to elope and as you can see, we are still together.” Mattie, still a beautiful lady, dressed in a beautiful, white, three-piece suit, trimmed in black, was ready to attend an early morning funeral for a member of her church. She burst into a broad smile as her husband held the door for their daughter to enter. She describes him as her “best friend.”

Mattie and Jimmie were married July 7, 1950 and came to Florida in 1952 to make Miami their permanent home. On July 4th weekend, the Clarks “will be celebrating 64 incredible years of marriage” with family and friends at their home in Opa-locka.

Mattie retired from 30 years of service as a nurse assistant, resident client-instructor ,from the Sunland Training center. She also worked as a childcare educator.

Jimmie retired from the William Lehman Buick Dealership after 42 years of service in the transportation department.

The Clarks are the proud parents of seven: Two deceased, Gertrude and Alonzo, and Jimmie, Jr., Juanita Clark Cleare, Patricia, Drew and Fifi Yvette; grandparents of 17 and great-grandparents of nine.

Mattie and Jimmie, always remember where they met and who has kept them together. “God is our source,” they both proclaimed. Mattie is a member of Saint City Church of God, presently, under the leadership of Pastor Helen Jenkins, the wife of the founder of Saint City Church of God, the late Bishop James Jenkins. Jimmie is a member of Antioch Missionary Baptist Church of Carol City, under the leadership of Pastor Author “Artie” Jackson, III.