World traveler celebrates 100 years of life

Maxine Edgar Flowers

Mississippi Link Newswire

Maxine Edgar Flowers
Maxine Edgar Flowers

You have probably heard the adage ‘When they made you, they broke the mold!” In most instances when this old saying is used, it’s meant as a joke. However, family members of Maxine Edgar Flowers believe this to be true. Fondly known to all as Aunt Maxine, this special woman celebrated 100 years of life Aug. 3.

Her incredible, inspiring story is not only a sterling example of what it takes to succeed in America, but it is also a lesson on how to uplift others and enjoy life to the utmost along the way.

Born Aug. 3, 1916, there is no documentation to identify Flowers’ birth parents. She was reared by Lucy Dixon and her loving family. Flowers attended Holy Ghost Catholic School in Jackson and, because of the religious connection at the school, she became and remains a devout Catholic.

Flowers became a resident of Chicago, Ill., after relocating there to live with Liana Davis, the sister of Lucy Dixon. Davis and her husband were residents there until the death of Mr. Davis. Liana Davis returned to Mississippi to bury him and soon returned to Chicago, taking 11-year-old Maxine with her. Flowers remained in Chicago, until Liana Davis succumbed in 1933. At 17 years old, Flowers returned to Jackson to live with her adopted sister, Clara Stevens, the daughter of Liana Davis.

In 1936, Flowers met the love of her life, Ernest (aka Uncle Henry) Flowers. She said it was love at first sight for both of them often sharing with family and friends that they fell in love within three days of their initial meeting and married on the fourth day despite the wishes of others.

The couple agreed to move to Chicago in 1943.  Shortly, after her arrival, Maxine became employed with the 3M Company and remained an employee there for approximately 40 years. Because of her exceptional work ethic, she was often chosen to travel as a company representative with 3M executives. Her travels included all of America (including Hawaii) and visits to Africa, Egypt, Europe, Japan and Russia.

She often shares stories about Caucasians in the European countries approaching her, marveling over her dark skin and hair and begging her to allow them to touch both, or to take pictures with her.

After Henry’s death in the late ’90s, Maxine relocated at the urging of her nieces, Lola Stevens Weakley and Clara Stevens Watkins, back to Jackson in March of 2000.

The couple had no biological offspring but the two were doting surrogate parents, and uncle and aunt to generations of Stevens and Flowers children.

While an employee of the 3M Company, she invested its stock. Upon her retirement from the company, she possessed many shares. The income from her investment, provided her with the opportunity to purchase property and assist family members, if needed.

Family members agree that Aunt Maxine is loved not just for the generous things she has done but because of the wonderful and kind soul she is. She is still very sharp of mind, has plenty of energy that was on display by dancing, laughing and singing at her recent birthday party, great eye sight, great hearing and is still walking, moving and grooving as she would say, with speed, a sexy wiggle and the utmost grace.

During the gift-giving portion of the 100 year celebration, Flowers was presented a special proclamation honoring her life from the White House, signed by President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama.

Flowers says she is on to win “The World’s Oldest Person Record!”

Those who know her don’t doubt that this will happen. Flowers says, “Get that world’s oldest person trophy ready and spit shine it up real good, because I’m coming for it!”

Family and friends surround Maxine Edgar Flowers, Aunt Maxine, during her 100th birthday celebration.
Family and friends surround Maxine Edgar Flowers, Aunt Maxine, during her 100th birthday celebration.

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