Contributed by Sheila Williams
Birthdays, just like everything else, come and go and most people past their twenties had just as soon forget that day of the year. It's different with Mrs. Florence Dodd. She will proudly celebrate her 107th birthday when April 3, 1984 rolls around!
Mrs. Dodd was born in Benton County in 1877, but after her marriage to Eugene Dodd on May 9, 1896, the couple moved to the north end of Decatur County where their children were born and raised. The couple had seven children, Mamie Inman, Verlie Inman, Bob Dodd, Glaydis Lindsey, Jessie Dodd, Wilbur Barton and Earlene Johnson. Verlie and Wilbur are the only two children still living.
After her husband's death in December of 1919, Mrs. Dodd took over not only the homemaking responsibilities, but she was a shrewd business manager, according to her daughter, Verlie.
"She was always up and going and doing things, but we never knew anything about business or money matters," explained Verlie. "My brother would work and bring home his money, then he was just like the rest of us. When he needed shoes or something, he would have to ask Mother for the money. We didn't know when she had money or when she didn't. All we knew was when we needed necessary things, she got it, but never went overboard."
Being a child during the Civil War, Mrs. Dodd grew up knowing what hard times were, but her children says she provided anything they "really needed."
Mrs. Dodd is now a patient at the Lexington Manor Nursing Center where she can be found sitting in a chair in her room anytime it's "daylight".
"She won't lay on the bed during daylight," Verlie pointed out. "She says she stays on the bed long enough at night."
What's Mrs. Dodd's secret about living to be 107 years young"
"Just take one day at a time," insists Mrs. Dodd.