Doing as she pleases at 104

Published 2:40 pm Saturday, September 23, 2017

When she became 100 years old in 2013, Louise Whitfield Story told contributing writer Merle Monahan that she felt the same then as when she was 98 or 99. On Friday, this reporter asked if she was still feeling well.

“Oh, sure … for an old lady,” Story said, adding she never thought she’d live this long. “Never.”

Louise Story has been celebrating her 104th birthday since Wednesday. — Stephen H. Cowles | Tidewater News

The Newsoms native has been celebrating with family and friends since the eventful day, which was on Wednesday, Sept. 20. Already she’s had company bringing their best wishes and even flowers. This past Friday afternoon, daughter Virginia Lee took her to lunch at the Village at Woods Edge in Franklin. Story is also looking forward to a visit on Sunday from her other daughter, Constance S. Roberson of Durham, North Carolina, and her grandchildren, Ed and Kristen Roberson, and great-grandson, Anson.

Thinking back on her life, Story recalls her growing up on a farm with her parents, Charles Franklin and Clio King Whitfield, and siblings, Franklin, Marion and Elliott.

She also remembered events such as meeting J.C. “Crack” Story on a dance floor.

“We loved to dance when we were young,” she said of the man who could become her husband of 60 years.

Before rearing a family, though, Story taught first and second graders in Newsoms, Boykins and Sedley. But getting married then meant no more teaching in a classroom.

Carrying her through the decades has been her devotion to God and worship at Franklin Baptist Church.

“I’ve been blessed,” Story said of her life, and the counting has included not only family and “many, many good friends,” but also good health.

Asked what else she enjoys about being a centenarian, Story firmly said, “You can do what you want!”