Recognition makes Florence woman, 104, ‘feel so good’

March 12, 2019

FLORENCE, S.C. – The Florence City Council recognized a 104-year-old woman Monday at its monthly meeting.

Florence City Councilwoman Teresa Myers Ervin read a proclamation to celebrate the 104th birthday of Eula Mae Graham Cummings. Myers Ervin had previously presented the resolution to Cummings at her 104th birthday party, held on Feb. 17. Cummings is the councilwoman’s neighbor.

“It is a blessing to have her in our community,” Myers Ervin said.

After Myers Ervin read the resolution, Cummings insisted on walking over to receive the resolution without the help of her walker and then recited a short poem she learned in school to the council.

“Well, I have to say a few words,” Cummings said. “I want to thank you all very much for having me here today. I appreciate it. That makes me feel so good.”

The poem she recited appeared to be a version of “Come Little Leaves,” by George Cooper.

Cummings was born on Feb. 22, 1915.

Two months later, Italy would change from an alliance with Germany and Austria-Hungary to an alliance with Britain, Russia and France in World War I. And in May of 1915, George Herman “Babe” Ruth hit his first major league home run.

Cummings has been a resident of Florence County all of her life according to the proclamation read by Myers Ervin. Cummings married in 1940. Cummings and her husband, who died in 1962, have six children, 17 grandchildren, 20 great-grandchildren and five great-great grandchildren.

“And whereas, upon the death of her husband in 1962, Mother Cummings, in addition to providing for her family a legacy of wit, wisdom and love, she sacrificed her time and energy, sometimes working two jobs to see all her six children graduate from high school,” Myers Ervin read.

Five of Cummings’ children went on to graduate from college, with two receiving doctoral degrees and another receiving a master’s degree.

“She provided the kind of happy home life and spiritual training that develops good citizens and worthy adults,” Myers Ervin said. “And whereas, in addition to being a wife, a mother, grandmother, a great-great grandmother, she has been active in her community and church.”

Cummings is also a member of the Northwest Senior Center and served as a foster mother.

She received her driver’s license at age 64 to obtain her independence.

Florence Mayor Stephen J. Wukela and Myers Ervin both noted that Cummings had seen the United States move from segregation to integration and the first black president.