09/17/04 — Lila Fagan turns 101

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Lila Fagan turns 101

By Bonnie Edwards
Published in News on September 17, 2004 1:59 PM

Lila Fagan read aloud a letter from the Goldsboro Mayor Al King congratulating her on her 101st birthday Thursday.

The print was standard size, not enlarged. Younger folks at her home, the Alterra Sterling House Assisted Living Residence on Berkeley Boulevard, rode to lunch in their wheelchairs. But Mrs. Fagan walked with a cane, with a little help from one of her nieces, Molly Hood, who had come to bring her a present.

Mrs. Fagan hears and talks well and doesn't look her age. She didn't have any children, but she has lots of nieces who care for her, said Ms. Hood.

She has been at Sterling House for nine months, but she says it feels more like forever, at least several years.

She used to live with her sister, Clara Lee Gurley, on Pine Street. But in October at the age of 102, Clara Lee died.

"Aunt Lila came to live here, because she didn't want to be by herself, and we didn't want her to be by herself," said Ms. Hood.

She's not alone now. She has her own room and lots of company when she opens the door. She loves to go places, especially out to eat.

That's what she did on her birthday. She and 10 family members went to the K&W Cafeteria for dinner.

Mrs. Fagan was born in 1903 and remembers riding a horse and buggy to school. She grew up Lila Stevens in the Stevens Mill community of Grantham and attend Falling Creek School.

She was one of seven girls and three brothers. She outlived them all.

"My mother, her sister, was the next to the baby," said Mrs. Hood. "There were two younger than Aunt Lila."