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I was born and lived for 18 years in the little village of McClellanville before going to Charleston for college and work.
Did you know there were a good many noted people who were born in the village? To name a few: Dr. Archie Rutledge, writer, poet and poet laureate of South Carolina; one of Charleston's mayors, William (Bo) Morrison; Harry Lofton, an ambassador to Venezuela; Dr. Pete Beckman, head of the psychiatric department at the asylum in Columbia; Dr. Walter Bonner, arthritis specialist; and Dr. Leland, ophthalmologist.
My middle name was Leland and I think I am kin to the all of the Lelands. One of them I dearly loved, Jack Leland, was writer and editor at The News and Courier in Charleston. Jack was my Junior-Senior date in high school.
Michel Graham had a highway was named for him. My nephew, whom I am very proud of, is Bud Hill, a sketch artist, writer and photographer. He made sketches of all the homes and churches in the village and was commissioned to do sketches of places in Georgetown. He has won several awards for his stories and photography. He has managed the Village Museum and he is called upon to head up many activities and to speak quite often.
I could go on and name many more lawmakers who were born in McClellanville. I went to help in the village right after Hurricane Hugo hit. I never saw such an outpouring of love and help from all over the United States. Truckloads of bread, milk and water, appliances and clothes, and people helping to rebuild. Now, the village is more beautiful than ever.
I may not have attained notoriety but I am proud to say I was a native of the village. The only awards I received during my life were for volunteer work. I did get several blue and tricolor ribbons for my flower arrangements in flower shows.
I have done some traveling. Ray, my husband of 62 years, gave me one of my New York trips at Christmas time and on my birthday. New York was beautiful at that time.
I coordinated one of my New York trips with Atlantic Coast Line. We (51 people) went by train to Washington, took a bus to New York and the bus stayed with us in New York. We went to the World's Fair.
I've lived in five states and nine cities. I am now back in Charleston living at Ashley Park, an independent living, retirement home. I love it here. They keep us busy all the time, doing all kinds of activities.
I also keep busy with my arts and crafts. I decoupage and paint on wine bottles, (we have Happy Hour twice a week, they know who gets the empties).
I also make angels from silk magnolias; I paint scenes on oyster shells; I look for pictures in magazines and news papers to put on my bottles. Some are scenes of Charleston, a moonlight scene, etc. I have a bottle tree where we put bottles in memory of loved ones - one is for Ray and another for my dog that I had for 15 years. There is a bottle for my dear friend Pat Haye who was a resident here. She was so talented. She showed me how to put a thin layer of a paper napkin picture on bottles.
When she died, her family gave me all her crafts plus the cabinets they were in, for which I am so grateful. I display my bottles in the halls here and my friends Bill and Jennifer Taylor sell them at flea markets and festivals.
As of December, I'll be 95 years old. I had no idea I'd live this long. I have had a wonderful life, try to stay healthy with vitamins and Aveeno moisturizer. My therapist, Beth Horton of Impact Therapy, tries to keep me in good shape. I've enjoyed every minute of my life, thanks to our heavenly father.
Emmie H. Day lives in Ashley Park in Charleston.
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