For the WPT
On May 18, Rosa Nell Hodges (“Momma Nell”) celebrated her 100th birthday with more than 100 guests, mostly her own family, at her home in Mathiston.
Momma Nell is the oldest living resident of Webster County who was born, raised and still lives here. She was born May 19, 1913, and married her husband of 40 years, Ira Estel Hodges (July 17, 1910-Aug. 24, 1969), in September of 1928 at the age of 15.
The two had nine children during their time together: Marion Hodges of Mathiston, JoNell Nickels of Maben, Don Hodges of McComb, Harold Hodges of Mathiston, David Hodges of Mathiston, Harry Hodges of Mathiston and three deceased sons — William Hodges, Howard Hodges and James “Bud” Hodges.
Momma Nell has been blessed with 20 grandchildren, 41 great-grandchildren and 36 great-great-grandchildren.
The town of Mathiston presented her with a plaque proclaiming May 19 as “Nell Hodges Day.” Board members Lavelle McAlpin and Harvey Pinnix, and Mayor Jimmy “Chew” Carden attended the celebration to present the plaque at her home, where she and her husband raised their children and she still lives today. WCBI of Columbus also attended this special celebration of her life.