Celebrating 99 years

By Sam Shriver - sshriver@limanews.com

SPENCERVILLE — Monday is a big day for Maxine McMichael. The Spencerville resident turns 99 years old.

On Sunday, her family celebrated a bit early with her.

“She’s had a very nice weekend. She’s been getting piles of birthday cards in the mail. So far she’s up to about 130 I think and still counting,” said Pam Graham, McMichael’s daughter.

But that’s not all.

“Someone sent her an anonymous gift of 99 carnations so she was really shocked by that and then (Sunday) her church, United Church of Christ, had a drive-by birthday parade for her,” Graham said.

Around 10 a.m. Sunday, McMichael got a delivery of 99 balloons.

All of this attention is something she’s not used to.

“Very excited, very blessed and very appreciative,” McMichael said.

McMichael’s health is still pretty good.

“She’s very independent for 99. She still lives in her own house and takes care of herself and she still has a driver’s license, although she’s been shut in because of the COVID virus and she’s very upset she can’t leave her house and go anywhere,” Graham said.

“I was still driving until this virus came along,” McMichael said.

McMichael is a retired registered nurse and remains active in her church.

“She’s in a group that quilts afghans for veterans on hospice. They’ve made dozens and dozens of those, in fact, The Lima News did an article on them last year,” Graham said.

Graham says her mom remains an inspiration.

“Yeah, we’d all like to live that long and be that independent, that’s for sure,” Graham said.

Does McMichael have any secrets to her longevity?

“Really, only keep moving,” McMichael said.

McMichael married her husband Carl (now deceased) before he was shipped out to fight overseas in World War II.

While her husband was overseas, McMichael gave birth to Pam.

“They didn’t have our communication system like they do now. We had to send a telegram and it took a while to get it there,” McMichael said.

She got a computer in 2000 but has vision problems and doesn’t use it all that much.

“It’s kind of slow and I get aggravated with it,” McMichael said.

McMichael says she really appreciates her family.

“I have all of these grandchildren, great-grandchildren, so it’s an exciting, great life,” McMichael said.


By Sam Shriver


Reach Sam Shriver at 567-242-0409.

Reach Sam Shriver at 567-242-0409.

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