By Liz Verley, Staff Writer
Deloras Sammons will celebrate her 100th birthday March 15 with a reception at the Bingo Park Community Center in Randall.
Born in Lucan, located in southwest Minnesota, Sammons grew up in the farming community.
“My father worked on various area farms,” Sammons said. “We always had a home that way. When my mother died in childbirth, my brother Devon, sister Caroline and I were separated. When my father remarried we returned home. There were 12 of us around the table then.”
Sammons attended several country schools before graduating from District 79 in Wabasso.
In July 1935, she married Jack Raveling. Jack passed away in April 1969.
Together they had three children: Carol (Jerry) Saxton, Randall; Peggy (John) DeBates, Chandler, Ariz. and Jack (Betty) Raveling, Payson, Ariz.
In 1974, she married Clarence (Pete) Sammons who had five children: Bill, Dick, Dave, Maryann and John.
Following Clarence’s death she moved to Randall in 2002 to be near her daughter, Carol.
“I had raked, picked up branches, cut branches and took care of the yard and decided I did not want to do that anymore,” Sammons said.
“They were building Eagle Court Apartments at that time and the children were encouraging me to locate closer, so, here I am. I like it here and Carol is only a couple of blocks away and checks on me every day,” she said.
Sammons is legally blind and suffers from arthritis although generally her health is fair.
Before the loss of her sight and the arthritis set in her favorite pastime was sewing.
She said, “Practically everything the kids wore from baby on, I made. I made Carol’s wedding dress and even made formals for the girls.”
Other hobbies she enjoyed in the past were gardening and baking. “Jerry always said Mom baked the best homemade bread in Minnesota,” said Carol.
Favorite memories include wintering in Arizona and fishing with friends.
“We would get the urge to go fishing so we would pack whatever we had handy and head out. We had a bucket grill and when we got hungry we would put whatever we brought along on it and enjoy,” Sammons said.
The only downer with those excursions was the poison ivy. “One time I waded out in the water a few feet. When I got out we discovered the water was filled with poison ivy. My legs were covered. It was really miserable but it did not stop our fishing trips,”she said.
Now her favorite pastime is getting mail. Her granddaughter Peggy Sammons lives in Elk River and writes and sends card to her grandmother several times a week. Other grandchildren call her regularly.
“Mail is important to Mom. She loves to get letters and cards,” Carol said.
Sammons said she has been getting many cards from people she has not seen for years.
“It is a surprise that people remember,” she said.
“It is so nice having Mom close,” said Carol. “She has been such a good mother and grandmother. Even if our family lives far apart, we are very close and we get together as often as we can. It is so nice having her just a couple of blocks away.”
The majority of Sammons’ children are coming to help her celebrate her birthday. She is also hoping that her sister Caroline, who is 94 and resides in Revere and her half-sister, Donna Munson, from Walnut Grove will be able to attend.
Sammons has 35 grandchildren, 52 great-grandchildren, 19 great-great-grandchildren and one great-great-great-grandchild.
Family, friends and the community are invited to join Sammons as she celebrates her birthday. The reception will be held from 2 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.