Friday, June 4, 2010

< 6 Degrees - P. Staton

Today I will be introducing the woman on the left of this picture and next week I will tell you about the woman on the right.

Apartheid was a legal racial segregation system enforced in South Africa between 1948-1994. The rights of the majority non-white inhabitants of this area were squelched by the minority rule of whites. Uprisings, protests and violence was prevalent before the death of apartheid. Can you imagine living in this country during this overwhelming upheaval?

MEET Philecta Clarke Staton. In 1993 she returned to the U.S. after having resided in Africa for 20 years, during the fall of Apartheid. In 2007 she retired from Genworth Financial and moved to Harrisonburg to be in close proximity to her children. Philecta has been involved in ministerial work for the majority of her 69 years. How many degrees separate you from Philecta?

She is enthusiastic about her work with JMU students through a college, church ministry which includes preparing a wonderful Sunday morning breakfast for the group. When I questioned her as to her passion, I could see a plethora of topics rolling through her thoughts but I reeled her in by only requesting one of two. Gardening was in the top 10 list as well as her dedication and advocacy for the Harrisonburg Farmer's Market. Philecta is also a freelance writer. She recently completed a book on ALS (Lou Gehrig's disease) designed to help with lifestyle issues of this disease and other diseases that cause swallowing issues.

You can find this caring, benevolent woman swimming on Monday, Wednesday and Friday
at the RMH Wellness Center at the early hour of 5:30 am. It would be well worth your time to venture out in the dark some morning and come meet her.

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