Marietta man celebrates century mark with family, friends

12/26/2013, 9:43 a.m.


Cogan Williams sits in his easy chair at his Marietta home and reflects on his 100 years. He hit the century mark on Christmas Day. To the left is a framed collage of family photos.

MARIETTA — Cogan Williams has a century of memories and life experience, as he turned 100 years old yesterday, Dec. 25, in the comfort of his home, with family and friends there to celebrate and embrace him.

Williams lived through and survived segregated city, where he moved to 75 years ago. And he worked for more than 60 years at Georgia Power (retiring in the late 1970s).

He and his wife, Harriett Mayes married and raised two children in the city, a daughter, Effie, who died in 2009 and a son, Freddie, who is 77.

Harriett died in 2002, but Williams still lives in his house, visited at least twice a day by family, including his granddaughter, Freida Castleberry, 53, of Marietta. He takes only one pill a day, for his low blood pressure, and is able to cook and clean for himself, family said.

He worked for more than 60 years at Georgia Power (retiring in the late 1970s).

Williams has 16 grandchildren, 29 great-grandchildren, 25 great-great-grandchildren and one great-great-great grandchild who all live in Georgia.

On weekends, he would take his grandchildren and nieces to Six Flags and Stone Mountain, and often planned picnics for the family to go on too, said Linda Toines, 63, the oldest granddaughter. He used to send Toines’ family care packages of clothes, food and toys, and would drive to surprise them in Augusta once every few months.

“We used to all come to spend the night, and pile into that back bedroom and Auntie (Harriett) would make the greatest sausages and pancakes,” said Sharie Mayes, a niece who lives in Atlanta.

For more on Williams and his century-mark celebration, read it here.