Evelyn Williams is well-known in Morristown.
To most children who come to The Daily Bread Community Kitchen and Food on Foot, Evelyn is the “Candy Lady,” giving bags of candy bars and suckers to children of those coming to receive food.
Saturday, Evelyn had an early 100th birthday party at Food on Foot at 1 Berkline Drive. Cars began coming at 7:30 a.m. for an 11 a.m. USDA Food Box giveaway. She will turn 100 on Nov. 4.
But the children came for Evelyn and the sweet treats she and some other volunteers would give out.
“I’ve been volunteering for 20 years (between The Daily Bread and Food on Foot),” Williams said. “Food on Foot started out from The Daily Bread in 2012.
Williams said that one has to keep moving in order to reach the century mark.
“You have to keep moving,” she said. “I’ve had a wonderful time. I’m on no medications. God has really taken care of me.”
Of five children she had over the years, two are still living, but the other three have passed away. Both siblings live in the Midwest, one in Illinois and the other in Minnesota.
“I went to Florida and met John there,” she said. “We got married then and moved back here, after he retired from Pan American, because he was born and raised here.”
Williams was raised in Missouri and Illinois. She has always worked, mostly with children. The Williams moved to Morristown in the 1970s. She worked at West View Middle School for 10 years. She was a substitute teach after retirement before she started volunteering at The Daily Bread 20 years ago.
“I’m still with kids,” she said.
Williams was the first volunteer with Food on Foot when Bobby and Carolyn Jarnagin founded it in 2012. Evelyn hasn’t been able to volunteer very much lately at either place due to restrictions with COVID-19.
“She was the first volunteer who came to me and asked if I would let her volunteer because she loves kids,” Carolyn Jarnagin said. “I told her that I would be happy for her to help me. At that time, we didn’t have as many volunteers as we have now. You can see the masses that come through. She is the ‘Candy Lady.’ We love her to death. We think she is an amazing woman and we all aspire to be like her.”
Saturday, Williams, along with other volunteers, was handing out candy, along with birthday cupcakes from Food City.
“I live day by day, whatever happens happens,” she said. “My advice is to have faith in God, that’s the main thing.”
Some facts from 1920, the year of Evelyn Williams’ birth:
President of the United States: Woodrow Wilson
Foods: Codfish cakes, Hoover Stew, Pineapple Upside Down Cake.
Drink: Gin Rickey.
Music: “Ain’t Misbehavin’” by Fats Waller, “Dark was the Night” by Blind Willie Johnsen, “Down Hearted Blues” by Bessie Smith and “In the Jailhouse Now” by Jimmie Rodgers.
Historic events included women receiving the right to vote, establishment of the League of Nations (precursor to the United Nations), airline flights became more common.
Average income was $3,269 a year, postage stamps cost two cents, bacon sold for 47 cents a pound, a half-gallon of milk sold for 28 cents, a dozen eggs were 55 cents.
In 1920, one could see a movie for 10 cents. Popular films were “Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde,” “Way Down East” and “The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari.”
Popular songs then were “Making Whoopie!” with Bing Crosby, “My Man” with Fanny Brice, “Swanee” with Al Jolson and “West End Blues” with Louis Armstrong
Inventions that came into existence include the traffic signal, frozen food, Band-Aids, water skis, electric blenders, television, vacuum cleaner, convertible automobiles and the invention of penicillin.
The Cleveland Indians won the World Series, the original Ottawa Senators were Stanley Cup Hockey champions and the National Football League was founded.
A young Walt Disney began work as an artist with Kansas City Slide Company for $40 a week.
The first radio was sold in America and the hand-held hair dryer appeared.