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Golden celebrations

Franklin County’s reverence for those in their golden years was on full display this past Sunday, as two octogenarians, one prominent in Apalachicola and the other on St. George Island, received the royal treatment for their birthday.

In Apalachicola, on the occasion of her 85th birthday. Irestine Bouie, a longtime resident of the Hill community, was treated to a drive-by salute, led by Sheriff A.J. Smith and a bevy of law enforcement personnel.

Bouie’s great-niece Felicia Rhodes, together with her aunt, Felicia Cummings, who is Bouie’s daughter, had put together a front yard full of balloons, together with a balloon throne upon which the matriarch could sit. Also helping out were Rhodes’ sons Jhamere and Maliek.

On that same day, St. George Island’s Martha Hodge marked her 80th birthday, celebrating a remarkable recovery from a serious fall a few years back. She and her husband Royce have lived on the island for several decades.

To mark the occasion, Hodge ate 42 oysters, since she was born in 1942, plus one more “to grow on.” On her 70th birthday, she had eaten 70.

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