Thelma Young has only one desire to live to be 100 years young for her family.
The spry great-great-grandmother's wish has been granted today on her centennial birthday. Born Jan. 22, 1913, in a small town in Pontotoc County, Young has seen and experienced a lot of history. Now she spends her days relaxing at The Village on Lee always with a smile on her face and her mouth slightly open.
"I always remember to open my mouth to smile," Young said. "I had one photo with my mouth closed and my granddaughter, who was 11, said 'Grandma, you look mean.' I've never forgotten that."
Young isn't the only person in her family to live well into her twilight. Her grandmother lived to be 96 years old, and she had two aunts on her father's side who lived to be the same age. While she comes from good genes, Young never planned on living as long as she has. She credits living a life without stress or hatred, but said her age is all in God's hands.
"Last night, I couldn't sleep and I thought a lot about it," Young said. "The main thing I came up with is it wasn't my idea, it was God's. When He got ready for me to come home, He would call me, and I'd be in His hands."