Cartersville woman celebrates 100th birthday
by John DeFoor
Jan 15, 2012 | 2186 views | 0 0 comments | 8 8 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Pauline Canty, as seen one month prior to her 100th birthday, while attending church at Pleasant Grove Missionary Baptist Church.
SPECIAL/Kristie Teasley
Pauline Canty, as seen one month prior to her 100th birthday, while attending church at Pleasant Grove Missionary Baptist Church. SPECIAL/Kristie Teasley
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Friends, family and fellow church members gathered together Saturday afternoon to celebrate Pauline Canty's 100th birthday at the Ryan's in Cartersville.

"Age ain't got nothing to do with it, you got to live right to have a long life," Canty said at the celebration. She was born in Adairsville on Jan. 17, 1912. "God gave to me. He let me live this long. It wasn't me. Day-by-day I walked and worked, and tried to do things right."

According to a Bloomberg News article, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that the average life expectancy as of 2010 in the U.S. is 78.7 years.

Canty is a member of Pleasant Grove Missionary Baptist Church in Cartersville and has attended the church since she was 14 -- the same year she was married.

Her husband, Howard Canty, was 22-years-old when they married. "Today they'd put him in jail," Canty laughed when talking about the couple's age difference.

They met at a ball game in Kingston. "He started writing letters to me." When they were married, Canty said they had a room full of people -- except for her parents.

"Mama and Papa didn't know nothing about it," Canty said. "My mother told me [soon after], 'You made your bed, now you got to sleep in it.'

Howard Canty passed away in 1986.

The couple never had children but according to Roberta Zachery, Canty is a mother figure to her.

"We go to the same church," Zachery said. "She's just like a mother to me. She's funny. We have a good time. I take her to the bank and wherever she needs to go."

According to Llwellyn Rogers, Canty has seven living nephews and nieces, and many more great-nephews and nieces. "She's got more great-greats than she's got of anything," he laughed. "I'm a great-nephew." Rogers describes Canty as a "strong willed, independent woman." He said that even today she lives by herself and takes care of herself.

Besides her church, Canty also loves fishing and cooking.

According to Kent Summey, she went catfishing at Dellinger Park last August, starting before 7 a.m. "She loves to fish," he said.

When asked if she caught anything, Canty said, "Yeah!"

"She always catches something," one of her friends laughed.

"I've always liked to cook," Canty said. She still cooks with her favorite dishes including squash casserole, sweet potato soufflé, and chicken dressing.

"She has a famous pound cake recipe that she does not like to share with people," said Pastor Michael Teasley. "I think I'm the only one who got the recipe. I think I was privileged cause I'm the pastor," he laughed. "Its just a blessing to have her and to say that at such a young age that I'm her pastor."

Today, Pleasant Grove plans to have a ceremony after church to honor and recognize Canty.