April 21, 2008

America Florence Coffey

America Florence Coffey, born Mar. 11, 18891 in Wayne Co., KY, was a daughter of Benjamin Franklin and Martha Cecelia Dobbs Coffey. Benjamin belongs to the Nelson N. and Keziah (Kizzie) Watters Coffey family.

She first married Litten Keith on May 24, 1911 in Wayne Co. After his death in 1920 she married Sherman L. Corder in 1922. Sherman died on Dec. 25, 1981 and America died in Stearns, McCreary Co. on Nov. 29, 1993.

The following appeared in the McCreary County Record on Mar. 16, 1993.

America Corder is 103 and going strong!

By Paula Vann
Record Staff Writer

This week America Corder celebrated her birthday!
What's the big deal?
She is 103 years young and still going like some 30 years her junior.
"Aunt Merk," as many members of her family call her, was born March 11 "way up on Wolf Creek," in 1890, It would be 22 years before McCreary County was born. In fact, the railroad was just punching its way into the area.

Though hard of hearing and nearly blind, America remembers what it was like. Like the time they took a skiff to Monticello.

America, born to B. F. (Benjamin Franklin) and Martha Dobbs Coffey, married Litton Keith not long after McCreary County was born. After just a few years, America lost Litton when he was killed in Mine 10 along Wolf Creek in western McCreary County.

After a time, America remarried. Her second husband was Sherman Corder. America and her husband moved to Stearns around 1925, buying a "three-room box house" on the Stearns Tower Road.

America still lives in that house. Additions have been made, but it still contains the original three rooms.

"When we moved here it was winter," smiles America. "If it hadn't been winter we'd have probably torn down the original house and built a log cabin. I never spent such a cold winter in my life," says America.

People dropped in all day last Thursday to wish America the best on her birthday. "I love having company," smiled America.

America never had any children of her own, but she has all kinds of 'children' that have adopted her through the years. Numerous nieces and nephews, their children and their children are her children, too.

America is fairly independent, despite her age. Lifeline helps her some with daily chores in and around her home, as well as help from family members.

To help celebrate her birthday, America had a fried chicken dinner which really hit her spot. A sheet cake graced the dining room table to serve visitors on America's special day. One family member was keeping record of all the birthday visitors to read to America later.

1Social Security Death Index
The photo is credited to Paula Vann
The article was contributed by Ola Jackson

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