Grandma Fuchs recieves Community Service Award.
I've only one grandparent left. My Grandma is 84 and lives near my father's relatives in North Carolina. She's one of the sweetest, most caring, and generous people I've ever known. There are many fond memories of her teaching me to crochet, going fishing, and listening to tales of our ancestors. Recently, she was awarded a Community Service award at her Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) meeting.
My aunt, Ellie Depew, wrote a letter that describes Grandma's service and dedication:
To Whom It May Concern:
When I was a child, one of the first hymns I learned was Others. "Lord, help me live my life/from day to day/in such a self-forgetful way/that even when I kneel to pray,/my prayer shall be for others." Even today, when I think of that hymn, I think of my mother. Her entire life has been spent serving others. It mattered not when it was her husband, her children, her church, or her community. For almost 85 years, she has been a cheerful servant.
I have watched her marshal the forces of the United Methodist Women to serve enough spaghetti and turkey dinners to pay for a new educational wing and fellowship for her church, coordinate and serve in the kitchen that served every Friday night at her local VFW hall, and plan successful fundraisers that supported soldiers at the nearby soldiers' home at that same VFW hall. She found and restored a 200-year-old family cemetery and then founded and chaired a committee that provides perpetual care for that same cemetery. The funds to provide that perpetual care were provided by a family cookbook that she assembled and sold and by twenty years of quilts that she made and donated to annual raffles, the proceeds of which were wisely invested.
While she was doing all those things, she was raising seven children, and serving as administrative council chairperson at her church, president of the VFW auxiliary for 8 years, vice-president of the Cooties -– the honor and service wing of the VFW -- and Regent of the Sarah Barton Murphy Chapter of the DAR for two terms.
In late October of 2004, when she was 80 years old, she packed up everything she owned and moved almost a thousand miles to Kings Mountain. Before long, she was active in a Sunday School class and a ladies' circle at Central United Methodist Church there. As a member of that church, each Friday she and another member pick up food from a local supermarket and distribute it to needy residents of Kings Mountain. She has crocheted almost two dozen prayer shawls for the church's prayer shawl ministry. She also makes and provides two different types of dolls to the Levine Children's Hospital, where they are given to the patients. She transferred her DAR membership to the Frederick Hambright Chapter, where she has served as Vice-Regent for two years and will soon become Regent.
Service to organizations and community is only part of her servanthood. Because we are both genealogists, she often calls me for help with knotty genealogical problems. They are most often for people who are not part of our family, but whom she has agreed to help. After four years of living in North Carolina, she still receives calls from Jefferson County, Missouri, where she is known as an expert on county history and genealogy. She also has helped several Kings Mountain natives ungnarl their own histories.
"Others, Lord, yes, others/Let this my motto be/Help me to live for others/So that I may live like Thee." Like a beacon on a hill, Norma Fuchs has spent her entire life graciously illustrating that hymn I learned as a little girl.