Clarine Higgins surrounded by Morehead State University’s Black Gospel Ensemble

Story and photos by Megan Smedley from The Morehead News. Originally published on Dec. 2, 2016

 

“As long as she has her Ale-8 and chicken wings from KFC, she is happy!”

 

Mrs. Clarine Higgins is described as a lovable, godly person and is known to the Sharpsburg [, Kentucky,] community as “Mama Clarine.”

 

She celebrated her birthday on Wednesday at the Life Care Center of Morehead, where she resides.

 

A birthday party was held at the facility, where family and friends joined to celebrate her life.

 

At the celebration, Higgins was inducted into Life Care Centers of America’s Century Club exclusively for centenarians.

 

Local public officials were on hand to present her with certificates in recognition of her experiences. Morehead State University’s Black Gospel Ensemble also perform.

 

The Ale-8 [soda] company of Winchester donated beverages for the party, Atkinson’s Florist donated flowers and Clydia Clark baked a cake, all in celebration.

 

Higgins, who never had a driver’s license, worked at a poultry yard in Mt. Sterling for a number of years and is an active member of the Greater First Baptist Church in Sharpsburg.

 

She is the oldest member of her church. Her favorite hymn is “Hush, Somebody’s Calling My Name.”

 

Higgins said, “I have lived a good life, and all you have to do is pray, pray, pray! I’m just waiting, waiting, waiting on the Lord to come back and get me.”

 

Higgins is one of Tom and Mornvi Crockett’s eight children and was born on Nov. 30, 1911, in Bethel [, Kentucky].

 

She relocated to Sharpsburg in 1943 and lived there until her move to Life Care Center of Morehead earlier this year.

 

Higgins lived independently until three years ago.

 

She was married for five years to William Young, the father of her only child, Jackie. After Young’s death, Clarine remarried Robert Moore, her husband of 23 years, until his passing. She then married James Higgins Sr., to whome she was married for 16 years until he passed away.

 

Higgins has three grandchildren and is a great-grandmother and great-great-grandmother.

 

She was joined at her party by her family, multiple friends at Life Care and her best friend, who is 90 years old.

 

“She is a woman of strength, character, peace, love and, most of all, a woman of God,” said Susan Jones, who considers Mrs. Clarine to be a second mother.

 

“I tell her that God must not be ready to take her home. He must have another job He needs her to do,” Jones said.

 

She added, “She always made sure everyone had what they needed. She always took care of everyone around her.”

 

Higgins is the oldest resident of Life Care [Center of Morehead].

View More Images