By M.K. Graves
Greene Publishing Inc.
Ellen Feacher is feisty at age 98: she climbs on the Madison Senior Center van twice a week and attends church almost every Sunday at Jeslamb AME Church.
“I got to come see my buddies,” says Feacher cheerfully. She especially likes to talk to Lorrine Quinn, Corine Rayam, Susie Powell, Jenethel Woods and Mosley Barfield.
“You old crow,” said Feacher as she greeted Mosley Barfield in the Senior Center foyer.
Feacher was named Senior of the Month at the Madison Senior Center, where her daughter, Ella Mae, 68, has served as the Volunteer Coordinator for two years.
“She’s always been a hard worker,” said Brown of her mother. “I used to see her working and wished I could help.”
Feacher was born in a family of eight in Monticello on August 15, 1913. She helped her mother, Maggie Nelson, raise her brothers and sisters. Later she went on to have her own family of nine children.
Making $1.25 tending a plantation, Feacher said, “I didn’t like hoeing, so I went to plow with a mule.” She put her children under a shade tree while she worked in the field.
“She would leave out of the field, cook, wash clothes, and take care of us,” said Brown.
The family includes four girls and five boys: Anthony, Earnest, James, Nickey, Lillie Mae, Ella Mae, Beatrice, Posey and the late Alfonso.
One day Feacher spotted her first Model T car. “I didn’t know what that thing was,” she said.
“What happened the first time you saw a car?” asked Brown.
“I ran from it,” she said. “I didn’t know it was coming!”
She remembers being 12 years old when Jefferson County was working on paving the road from Monticello to Tallahassee.
Meanwhile, some things never change.
“I enjoy my best friends,” said Feacher.