Mary Deck Marks 103rd Birthday with Family, Friends
BY BRAD SAM
McKENZIE (October 8) — Mary Deck was honored with a surprise party Sunday to mark her 103rd birthday at Lakeside Senior Living, where she has resided for many years. Dozens of family members and friends came from near and far for the monumental event.
Mary Page Lemmons Deck was born October 9, 1914 in Lansing, Michigan. She lived in McKenzie as a teenager and married the late Richard Oliver “R. O.” Deck at age 18.
The two returned to Lansing where he worked as a farmer and later an automobile dealer while Mary was a housewife and mother. Upon her husband’s retirement, they moved back to McKenzie and also regularly spent time in Florida.
The couple had two daughters, Norma (Atkins, of Memphis) and Sandra (Crawford, of Paris). The family has since grown exponentially to include four grandchildren, seven great-grandchildren and two great-great-grandchildren.
Dozens of her immediate and extended family joined with her friends at Lakeside to surprise the centenarian with cake, ice cream and punch.
McKenzie Mayor Jill Holland attended the gathering to issue an official proclamation congratulating Mary on the milestone.
In an interview with The Banner, Mary said that she was “totally surprised.”
“I never dreamed of it,” she added. “My daughter, Sandra, thought I would be mad, but I’ve seen too many people and it’s been so nice that everyone took the time to come. I’ve enjoyed seeing every one of them.”
When asked how she felt as she approaches 103 years old, the matron said, “I feel pretty good today,” adding with a laugh, “Tylenol really helps.”
The party went on for several hours as each individual spent time with Mary. She particularly enjoyed the quality time with her two greatgreat- grandchildren, who she says are “just wonderful, cute as they can be.”
Photos by Brad Sam/The Banner