Sanders celebrates 90th birthday

Published 8:34 pm Tuesday, March 17, 2020

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On Saturday afternoon, Mary Alyce Sanders celebrated her 90th birthday with 100-plus family members and friends at Goshen Baptist Church.

The church fellowship hall was a-buzz with remembrances of the good times shared with the “farm girl” who never ventured far from her roots.

“I was born on a farm, grew up on a farm and married a farmer, J.R. Sanders,” Mary Alyce said. “And, I have lived in this same house in Goshen for 53 years now. So, this is home.”

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Mary Alyce ‘s sons, David, Kirby, Carter and Michael shared the milestone birthday with her.

“I’m proud of my four sons and they helped make my 90th birthday so very special,” she said. “I’m still reading all the many cards that I got from family and friends. I appreciate every card and just hope they all know how much they mean to me.”

Mary Alyce’s sister, Sarah Carter Jones, age 103, opted to stay home in Goshen, but the story of the role she played in her sister’s birth was shared many time during the party.

When Mary Alyce Carter was born on March 17, 1930,  she was attended by her mother. Her daughter, Sarah, age 13, had been kept out of school to help with her toddler brother.

However, Sarah’s grandmother got sick and went home leaving the care of mom and baby to a lady who lived nearby and brought along her son.

The two little boys were playing and somehow, little Melton Carter fell into the fireplace and burned his hands severely on the fire coals.

“The story is that Sarah knew the burns were bad so she grabbed Melvin and jumped in our Model T and drove to my cousin’s Fannie’s house,” Mary Alyce said.  “Fannie cracked a bowl of eggs and separated the yoke from the white and applied the egg whites to Melton’s hands and then wrapped a clean dish towel around them. He immediately stopped crying.”

Sanders said her cousin Fannie was a Native American and a relative of Chief Osceola.

“That may account for her instinct in treating Melton’s hands,” she said. “Those burns did not leave any scars on his hands.”

That was one of the many stories shared at Mary Alyce Carter Sanders’ 90th birthday party on Saturday. On Tuesday, she was still basking in the remembrances shared.

The day of Mary Alyce Carter Sanders’ birth was an eventful occasion but her 90th birthday was especially special because of all the love and stories shared.

“I treasure every minute of it,” Sanders said.