A century of life. One hundred years spanning from 1922-2022. Independent to the end. Unusual, but very real. The time line is overcrowded. So much happens in a lifetime. Both for the world and the individual.
1922- Start of the Century of Life
Each year has key events. 1922 had several. A detailed month-by-month list can be found on Historic Newspapers which can be accessed by clicking here. Political upheaval topped the events. Fascism was rampant in Europe. Although Hitler did not attain power that year, he was shortly jailed and was flexing his muscles. Benito Mussolini did become the Italian dictator in 1922.
Of other key political events, the most notable was the formation of the U.S.S.R. in December of the year. Other incidents of unrest included the Irish Civil War and the Rand Rebellion. So even though World War I had just concluded, peace was not present throughout the world.
1922 also marked the U.S. Supreme Court ruling recognizing the validity of the 19th Amendment to the Constitution giving women the right to vote. The suffrage movement continued across the globe. Women were experiencing many firsts. Most notable was Rebecca Felton of Georgia, first United States Senator. Across many fields of study and occupations, women were beginning to be recognized for their work.
Friend and Fellow Zontian
Friendships are hard to explain. Often they revolve around shared interests. In this case, the shared interest was the work of Zonta International. A group I have discussed before. I have been a member almost thirty years, my friend for over sixty. Only a special cause spurs this type of loyalty. Empowering women is such an ideal.
Century of Life for Beverly
Beverly was born in 1922. She grew up in Michigan, graduated from Northwestern University and took a long train ride west to begin the rest of her long productive life.
During her first years on the High Plains, she worked in her field of study for a large hotel/restaurant. Then she jumped ship and started a business of her own.
This wonderful women, sole-proprietor of a small clothing shop in a small town was a living example of work ethic. She maintained both her home and store right up to her death. And she showed up to meetings and events continuously. Just a few weeks prior to her death she attended a Chamber of Commerce dinner where she was pleased to witness a fellow Zontian win the Chamber Person of the Year.
Beverly was an active member of Zonta International. My friend served on all levels from the local club to the International level. I have much respect for her work. And her humility. She often commented that her only merit was her longevity. Fortunately, this was not the case.
In the United States, communities recognize outstanding citizens in a variety of ways. People of the Year awards, newspaper articles, movie marquees and often the last if not the least is eulogies. At Beverly’s funeral a review of her life was definitely part. But the best of the service were the poems read by her great-granddaughters: I Am Standing by the Seashore and The Dash.
Both poems reflected the century of life lived by the Christian. Faith and good works. A life well-lived. Rest in Peace Beverly. 1922-2022.