Celebrating 100 Years

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This past weekend, we traveled to Andrews, Texas, to celebrate my Uncle HD’s 100th birthday. He turned 100 last week on October 21st.

Uncle HD was born on a family ranch outside Midland, Texas and first arrived in Andrews, Texas, in a covered wagon when he was three years old.

There was a replica of a covered wagon at the party to represent his arrival in Andrews 97 years ago.

Photo courtesy Cherry Price Potter
Photo courtesy Cherry Price Potter

The table centerpieces represented a various aspects of HD’s life over the span of a century.

Photo courtesy Shirley Price
Photo courtesy Shirley Price
Photo courtesy Shirley Price
Photo courtesy Shirley Price
Photo courtesy Shirley Price
Photo courtesy Shirley Price

HD is mentally sharp and shared stories with us as all 100 or so family and friends gathered around him in the fellowship hall of his church. He shared how he traded a $5 hat for a horse. As he shared, his daughter, Cherry would lean over and say, “Daddy, tell them about how you cooked beans.”

To which HD replied, “I’m getting to that.” And the room burst with laughter.

Photo by Shonda Savage
Photo by Shonda Savage

Uncle HD may tire more easily, but that doesn’t keep him from moving around. He keeps himself busy. He was even washing dishes on his birthday. He shares that his secret to longevity is hard work. He definitely keeps himself busy.

Still washing dishes at 100. (Photo courtesy Cherry Price Potter.)
Still washing dishes at 100. (Photo courtesy Cherry Price Potter.)

Over the years, Uncle HD worked in construction building schools and various Air Force bases during World War II. He was ineligible to serve in the military due to an eye injury. After completing construction of the military bases, he returned to Andrews and worked as a custodian at the school. Later he began working for an oil company as a roughneck. He held a myriad of positions in the oil industry before retiring in 1983.

Even though Uncle HD retired from working, he has always kept himself busy. At the party, HD handed out business cards to everyone that reads: No Plans, No Money, No Worries. It includes his name, address, and phone number, then concludes with — “Ain’t mad at nobody; Ain’t runnin’ for nothing; Available for fishin’, coffee drinkin’ and advice givin’ for 100 years — Oct. 21, 1914 – 2014.”

Uncle HD served many years in his local church congregation. He served as an elder for a number of years. He is a living walking testimony of Jesus.

Once church member shared with me, “HD is the papa of the church.”

Cherry Price Potter, his daughter said to those in attendance of the party, “If you follow in the steps of my daddy, you are following Christ. He lives out the Bible every day of his life.”

When Cherry said that, it reminded me of what Paul wrote to the Ephesians:

Follow God’s example, therefore, as dearly loved children and walk in the way of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God” (Ephesians 5:1-2 NIV).

I see Christ lived out in my Uncle as well. He is a godly example for us to follow.

Also, I was impressed by how many family members in attendance were over 80 years old. And they all moved about very well. This is a testament to me that God does desire to give us a great number of days – and healthy days.

Praise the Lord, my soul,

and forget not all his benefits—

who satisfies your desires with good things

so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.

Psalm 103: 2, 5 NIV

I decided after witnessing the testimony of my Uncle HD that I will follow in his example as he follows Christ. What a wonderful testimony — all for God’s glory!

PLEASE PRAY!

Though the celebration was priceless, it was dampened by the fact that HD’s 95-year old wife, Redah, was taken to the hospital just before the birthday celebration. She was transferred to a hospital in Odessa where she was diagnosed with emphesyma of the gallbladder and now at the time of this post is undergoing surgery to remove the gallbladder. This is a risky procedure, especially for her age. Prayer warriors, please pray for this procedure to be successful and for Uncle HD.

HD and Redah (Photo courtesy Cherry Price Potter)
HD and Redah (Photo courtesy Cherry Price Potter)

© 2014 Shonda Savage

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