Jackson takes title ‘Ms. Pike Manor’

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, May 2, 2000

Features Editor

May 1, 2000 10 PM

Katie Jackson was crowned Ms. Pike Manor 2000 at the annual pageant held Tuesday night at Pike Manor Health Care Center.

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Mrs. Jackson was "tickled pink" when she heard her name called as the winner. Being named a beauty queen at any age is special but, at age 91, Mrs. Jackson said it was "really something!"

As Ms. Pike Manor 2000, Mrs. Jackson will be eligible to compete in the state pageant in Birmingham later this spring. However, she said that’s a scary thought for her.

"That’s a long way from home," she said with a smile. "I don’t know about going that far off."

Mrs. Jackson is a native of Pike County and she is deeply rooted here.

She’s never been to the mountains or a really big city and she’s never wanted to go either.

"I went to Phenix City one time and to Ft. Myers, Florida," she said. "I never knew any place was as far away as Ft. Myers. I was so worn out I had to go to bed when I got there."

Mrs. Jackson’s sense of humor was one of the reasons she captured the title and the hearts of the audience.

"They asked me if I wanted to walk out there for the judging or to ride out," she said.

"I told them I wanted to walk if I could. My son walked out with me. I was proud of that."

Mrs. Jackson is the mother of seven children and "they said" 27 grandchildren and 37 great-grandchildren.

She was the oldest of 10 children herself, so having children around her all the time was second nature to her.

"My husband was in the navy and he was gone all the time," she said. "Most of the time I had to be mama and daddy to my children but I had nine brothers and sisters so I’d had a lot of practice."

Mrs. Jackson said her children always pitched in and helped her with the work around the house and they were "good children."

"We had a lot of fun – working and playing together. We even made mopping fun. it was a good life," she said. "I wouldn’t trade it for anything."

Mrs. Jackson’s family and church took most of her time but she always "worked it around" so she would have time to spend in her yard.

"I loved to work in the yard," she said. "I love beautiful flowers and I like to watch them grow. I was working in the yard when I had the stroke that put me here. But this is a good place. I have a lot of friends and a lot of fun. There’s always something to do and I try to stay in as much of it as I can."

Mrs. Jackson attributes her long life to good, clean living.

"I’ve never smoked or drank but I did eat greasy food, so what do you make of that?" she said laughing.

Mrs. Jackson congratulated her queen’s court and said they are some ‘"beautiful girls."

First runner up to Ms. Pike Manor was Cornelia Caylor, Annie Norris was second and Marie Wilburn was third. Annie Flowers was Ms. Congeniality. Photographs of the runners up and Ms. Congeniality will appear in the Wednesday edition of the Messenger.