Ms. Aileen, who will be turning 102 years old this week, is one of our favorite centenarians! She was born on June 9, 1916, in Cherokee County, South Carolina. Great-granddaughter of Lt. Col. Frederick Hambright, who fought at the Battle of Kings Mountain during the American Revolution. Aileen proudly shares tales of what it was like to be the second oldest of eight children, and one of six daughters to two wonderful parents. She often talks about the excitement of being raised on a cotton and vegetable farm “out in the country.”
Aileen’s most memorable stories she likes to share are of the riding horse she and her seven siblings had. She also shares stories like the day “Prince,” the family horse, fell over spilling Aileen into the creek. And the many times she fed the cat in the barn while milking the family cow. She always chuckles and tells us, “I had good aim!” Another one of her tales is of the day “the wind blew so hard, it pushed me into the side of the house; but my mama taught me how to stay put and wait for it to end.” Aileen is truly a delight; full of entertaining stories, wit, intelligence, kindness!
Growing up, education was essential to Aileen’s mother, so she started a one-room schoolhouse and hired a teacher to help teach her children. Together, they educated Aileen, her siblings, and hundreds of other children where they lived. “The teacher lived upstairs in our home but didn’t have to walk the mile to the schoolhouse like me, because she had a car!” This teacher, along with their mother, saw to it that all eight of the Hambright children received their education through high school.
On November 8, 1940, after attending business school in Charlotte, N.C., Aileen married Alvie, or A.D., and had two amazing children ~ Al and JoAnn. Together they owned the Western Auto store in Davidson, and they were the Western Union representatives for the area. Aileen and A.D. remained married until his death in 1968, but that didn’t stop Aileen from doing all she could do to remain active in her children’s lives, and live a long happy, healthy life. “Genes, good food, a balanced diet, and plenty of exercise,” is what this amazing centenarian will tell you!
Today, Aileen has her children, and their spouses Jean and Doug, whom she loves as her very own. The centenarian has four beautiful grandchildren and seven loving great-grandchildren who all visit her with love and admiration. When asked if she could tell her family, and all of the people in the world something she would want them always to remember, she responded:
We love having Ruth Aileen as a part of our community here at the Oaks at Towne Lake! Be sure to subscribe to our blog to discover more amazing life stories of our residents. If you have a loved one who might be interested in becoming a resident, be sure to contact us today!
“Do the right thing, be kind, and don’t hurt anybody.”