Photo by Naomi Hatch
Lucy Luna Taylor turned 100 on Oct. 22, and plans to continue celebrating for two weeks as family members visit to mark the occasion.
By Naomi Hatch
If you visited Freeland Manor (formerly Webb’s Adult Care) last year, you probably met Lucy Glover Luna Taylor. She usually sat by the front door and greeted everyone as they came into the facility. She always said she was a “Southern belle and a good Christian.” She was always up to a good visit and more than happy to show you the chair her dad made for her.
Lucy didn’t say much about her age; she just liked to chat with you. About a year ago she took medication that had a bad effect on her, and is now in a wheelchair. She has good clarity days and not so good days, but most of the time she recognizes her family.
Lucy celebrated living a century on Tuesday, Oct. 27. She was born in 1915 at Shiloh, Tenn., and has lived through the Depression, World War II, a lot of hard work, many hours of serving others and through the deaths of two husbands.
She was the first daughter and fourth child of eight siblings, one died in infancy.
Her grandfather attended Anderson College and was an ordained minister in the Church of Christ, always setting a good example to his family.
Her father started a church in Arkansas and moved his family there when she was a young girl.
During the Depression many families lived with family, including the Glovers. It was also during Prohibition, but one of her memories is of driving two of her brothers around to check on their stills.
Another fond memory was her horse Pet. As a child, her favorite thing to do was ride Pet. “She looked forward to getting done with her chores so she could ride,” said Faith Taylor, a granddaughter. “She used to get tickled laughing telling me about taking off on that horse. She knew she was going to get a butt whacking, but enjoyed it.
“They were very active in service work their whole lives, whether they were employed or not, and not just to people from church, but from their neighborhood,” Faith continued.
Lucy married Hubert Jackson Taylor on Aug. 18, 1934. Hubert was named after Andrew Jackson, his uncle.
They had two sons, Jerry and Marvin Taylor. Lucy didn’t have a daughter so she loved her boys’ wives. She helped make Marvin’s bride’s wedding gown and taught her many things, including how to can.
Jerry has passed away, but Marvin and his daughter Faith care for Lucy every day.
Lucy was a stay at home mother, but still helped in the fields. “After I was born, just before the war (World War II), they left the farm and moved to Little Rock, and Dad went into public work,” said Marvin explaining that he worked at a kind of factory making barrel staves. His salary back then was 25 cents an hour. Lucy continued as a homemaker.
They moved to Arkansas, where Hubert went to work for the steel foundry. He was working there when World War II broke out. He was approached by a Dr. Eschweiler, who had gone to the foundry looking for someone to work with him making equipment to make blood plasma for the University of Arkansas. Hubert went to work with the doctor, and they built the blood bank for the war.
“Dad bought a small repair shop, Taylor’s General Repair, in McCrory, Ark.,” said Marvin, noting that he worked with his dad repairing just about everything, because that was a time when you didn’t throw anything away, you repaired it.
Lucy was a Stanley salesperson, took care of the kids, helped with the garden and raised chickens.
“They always had a garden, and she canned everything,” said Marvin.
“Ma canned everything,” said Faith, noting her Ma and Pa, the family name for grandma and grandpa, were avid fishermen and Ma would even can the fish. She would can rabbits and squirrels, too. They always had a garden and she canned everything she could from it.
They moved to Arizona in 1954, first to Douglas, where Hubert briefly worked as a millwright, and then to Bisbee, where he worked for a construction company.
“That’s when the intense service work started,” said Faith. “As long as I can remember my Ma was always cooking for somebody, always doing things for other people.”
They moved to San Manuel after the mill job was completed in Bisbee.
When the Taylors retired, they bought and flipped houses, and bought things at yard sales and then had their own.
After her husband died on Dec. 8, 1987, she met Noel Luna at church.
“He gave her time to grieve, but he was bound and determined he was going to marry her,” said Marvin, and he did. Noel later had Alzheimer’s and has passed away.
In 1977, Marvin retired and moved to Snowflake. Lucy later followed so she could be closer to family. Her son Jerry also followed the family to Snowflake.
Lucy can play the piano by ear. Faith said that she brought her piano to Snowflake, and was living at Putter’s Paradise. Her sons had to build a room for the piano that she played up until about five years ago.
Lucy’s mother played stringed instruments, including the fiddle, mandolin and guitar, and they would play together. Both had an ear for music.
“My Ma taught me to pray,” said Faith, who visits Freeland Manor every day to help care for her grandmother. “Although my Pa wasn’t a minister, they were very active in their church. Pa was a Mason and Ma was an Eastern Star. Ma is the strength to the family.”
Lucy loved to quilt and made beautiful ones. She crocheted doilies and she has made bead doilies. “She loved doilies,” said Faith.
She also loves knickknacks and Norman Rockwell things, according to Faith and Marvin.
“She’s got treasurers in store in heaven,” said Faith. “As long as I can remember she’s done for other people.”
Lucy will celebrate her birthday for two weeks, because her large posterity will be taking turns visiting over the next two weeks, including Jerry’s wife, and the grandchildren, great-grandchildren and great-great-grandchildren.