The Daily Star, Oneonta, NY - otsego county news, delaware county news, oneonta news, oneonta sports

Columns

September 23, 2013

Swapping stories with a sweet centenarian

(Continued)

“It wasn’t around yet back then,” she said with a slight giggle.

Marge Mathews is 105 years old next week.

I asked her about her association with St. Mary’s Church. “I have been a member all my life,” she told me. “I was baptized there in 1908. I married my husband, Thomas Mathews, in the old St. Mary’s on Feb. 22, 1930. We went on our honeymoon to Brooklyn.”

“Brooklyn,” I said. “Gee that doesn’t sound very romantic.”

The little bespectacled lady leaned over her apple pie and winked at me. “We thought it was plenty romantic,” she laughed.

Tom Mathews was a longtime newspaper man at what was then the Oneonta Daily Star, working the linotype and rising to shop foreman. Marge spent decades making dresses at the Fairfield Manufacturing Company on Dietz Street.

I spoke with Carol Ann Bagnardi, who is related to Marge by marriage. She told me Marge has no relatives left in the Oneonta area but has a large family in Albany. “The weddings up there are epic. A very big family for sure.”

Carol is a constant, friendly and reliable companion to Marge and she does it willingly. “I love this lady. She is the wisest, nicest most undemanding woman I have ever met. She is such a joy to be around. Even when the littlest relatives come around, they gravitate to Marge to listen to her stories. She is just so special. And resilient. She doesn’t have a regular doctor, lives alone in her home, and I have to argue with her to get her to take an aspirin,” she said with a smile.

Is Marge the oldest resident of Otsego County? Probably. Is she the oldest member of the St. Mary’s parish? Almost certainly.

Marge’s faith, rooted in her earliest days at Oneonta’s hallowed Catholic Church, maintains her as she takes each day at a time. “I am ready,” she told me. “I am not afraid. When my Lord calls me home, I am ready to go.”

Text Only
Big Chuck D'Imperio
Cary Brunswick

Chuck Pinkey
Guest Column

Lisa Miller

Mark Simonson
Rick Brockway

Sam Pollak
William Masters
  • Schreibman tops Chris Gibson on women's issues

    As the time to vote draws near, we need to remember how money can run politics more than we can. Raising funds is a prominent (if not the dominant) task of getting elected. Raising issues is also crucial, but those efforts are subject to distortion and fear-mongering.

    September 18, 2012

  • Republicans feelentitled to allthey can garner

    An entitlement is a legal benefit available from the government to individuals who are within a defined category of recipients, such as needing insurance for unemployment or health services.

    September 4, 2012

  • Romney focuses on self; Obama emphasizes unity

    Mitt Romney criticizes President Obama for saying a person's success is rooted in his community, and is not all his alone. Romney belittles this with his belief in individual initiative. He is better at the put-down than the push-up.

    August 21, 2012

  • Romney shows little regard for common man

    The Republicans in Congress have voted over and over, 33 times, redundantly and uselessly, to rescind what they call Obamacare.

    August 7, 2012

  • Scouts' gay ban creates problem where none exists

    The Boy Scouts of America's "emphatic reaffirmation" of its vow to exclude any and all homosexuals from its hallowed ranks is ill-considered and pathetic, especially in view of its having reviewed the matter for two years.

    July 24, 2012

Additional Content
Join the Debate
Helium
Additional Resources
CNHI News Service
Poll

Do you plan to attend the Baseball Hall of Fame Induction?

Yes
No
Not sure
     View Results