Murfreesboro, TN – For the past five years, Family Staffing Solutions has honored Rutherford County residents age 100 or older with a celebration and induction into the “Century Club of Rutherford County.” This year, ten centenarians were honored for their lifetime contributions to the community. Five new centenarians were presented a beautiful Centenarian Award from Governor Bill Haslam, along with a Proclamation from Murfreesboro City Mayor Shane McFarland, proclaiming the last Thursday of every July to be “Centenarian Appreciation Day.”
Family Staffing Solutions recognized eight centenarians in Murfreesboro. Mabel Robertson, age 105, received a special certificate recognizing her as the eldest citizen of Rutherford County. Robertson has lived in Murfreesboro her entire life, and just stopped driving at age 102. George H. Barrett is the first man inducted in to the Century Club of Rutherford County. He will turn 102 this year, and he and his wife Ruth will celebrate their 77th wedding anniversary later this month. Barrett is a native of Walter Hill where he farmed for much of his life. Geneva Delene, a retired teacher, is 102 years old and lives with her two daughters in Murfreesboro. Catherine Hall, age 100, grew up in San Antonio and moved to Nashville to attend Peabody College. She retired from teaching 1st grade in 1977. Additional honorees are: Pauline Cantrell, age 103; Margaret Cook, age 104; Flora Curtis, age 100; and Mary Soper, age 105. Soper, who is a few months younger than Robertson, states that she has seen 18 U.S. Presidents elected.
The Town of Smyrna recognized two honorees who are Smyrna residents with a “Key to the City.” In total, Family Staffing Solutions has recognized 24 centenarians who are now members of the Century Club.
Mary Nell Belcher and Sallie B. Chason, both 100 years old, were presented with a Smyrna Key to the City pin. Councilman Tim Morrell met each of the ladies at Azalea Court Assisted Living to make the presentations.
Mary “Nell” Belcher was born in Talladega, Alabama, and grew up in Alabama and Florida in a family of nine children. She relocated to Old Hickory, Tennessee when her husband Bill began working for DuPont. Belcher is known among friends for her outstanding cooking and her skilled seamstress skills. Sallie Chason was born in Rocky Mount, North Carolina, where she lived in her family’s home and land until moving to Smyrna eleven years ago. She is her family’s unofficial historian and enjoys telling stories about her past. She loves chocolate and Coca Cola and credits both with helping her reach her 100th birthday.“To have lived 100 years is to have witnessed some of the most important times in history,” said Kathy Bennett, Director of the Murfreesboro office of Family Staffing Solutions. “We want to do our best to honor the hard work, accomplishments, family legacies and history of these individuals built over the past century.”