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Celebrating 100 years, XXIV.I.MCMXX

                                                                                                                          Photo by Christy Porter
Roy and Pauline Cavaness shared 100 years of life history 
and 74 years of a successful marriage on a recent visit.

By Christy Porter
Managing Editor

Long-time local resident Roy Cavaness is celebrating his 100th birthday. The Licking Assembly of God Church will be hosting a birthday party for Roy on Saturday, Jan. 25 from 2 to 5 p.m. All are invited and welcome to come. No gifts please, your presence is present enough.
Roy Mitchell Cavaness was born in Houston, Mo., on Saturday, Jan. 24, 1920, born in a Leap Year to Johnny and Charlcy Helton Cavaness. He was named after Dr. Mitchell from Salem. The elder Cavanesses had five boys, Alfred, Roy, Luther Ray, Willie and Johnny.
Roy has seen a lot of changes over the many years. Woodrow Wilson was president at the time of his birth and President Trump will make eighteen presidents during his lifetime so far. National average prices: for gas 30-cents, now averaging $2.55 per gallon; a stamp 2-cents, now 55-cents; a gallon of milk 5-cents, now $3.28; a car $345, now, a small car $20,000; a house $6,269, now $303,000; average income $3,269, now $63,000 per year. More specifically for Roy personally was going from a horse and wagon to a Ford tractor, to more tractors to work the farm.
The family moved to a farm in the Big Piney and Success area, where they farmed crops and raised cattle, chickens and horses. Roy attended school at Ellsworth and Pine Grove until the fifth grade, when his father was involved in an accident while hauling gravel on the Piney River and was killed. Roy quit school and began working full-time on the farm to help his mother, who was now raising five boys alone.
Roy’s eyes light up when talking about his horses. His father bought Old Charley before his passing and while Roy would have loved to have kept him, the stallion was a bit much for a young boy, so he was sold. Horses have continued to be a part of his life, having had up to 25 at a time over the years. He says, “The horses would come over the hill at feeding time to greet me.” He speaks with fondness of Selem, a saddle horse sired by Old Charley who would help break the other horses, staying right with them.
“Kenneth Hobson, a nearby neighbor and I, worked together on our Model As; we would work on ‘em one day, drive ‘em one day and work on ‘em the next day,” says Roy with a smile. Since then Roy has had many cars but believes a pickup is his favorite vehicle.
He met the love of his life, Pauline Vaughn, on the Piney River. June 14 they will be celebrating their 75 wedding anniversary. Pauline’s family settled around Success from Bloodland, which is now the Fort Leonard Wood area. The newlyweds lived on the Cavaness farm the first four years of their marriage. When his mother sold the farm, Roy and Pauline moved with their two sons to Jacktar Hollow near Boiling Springs before moving to Licking. They rented what was to be their home place until it came up for sale, at which time they purchased the property. They renovated and remodeled the old farmhouse, which required much work but is a beautiful home. It was here they raised four children, Gary, Garold, Ina and Betty. Ina regrettably passed away Jan. 18, 2019.
Roy worked for the Rawlings Company for 35 years, retiring in 1985. He began as custodial janitor and became night watchman. He hauled the scrap material off from the factories for years. Pauline also worked at Rawlings, retiring in 1990 after 40 years.
Roy was a hard worker, who in addition to full-time employment at Rawlings continued the family tradition of farming and raising cattle and horses. Chores of haying, bush hogging, yard work, cutting timber and much more have kept Roy very busy over his lifetime. His family, factory career and farming have been successful and instilled a strong faith; even with a limited education, he has used common sense, integrity and hard work to achieve much. Last month he sold the remainder of his cattle. He now rents the pasture acreage out.
The Cavaness’ are members of the Licking Assembly of God Church, where they have strong attendance and a familial bond.
“I have praised the Lord for all my hard work and I have continued on working and loving my family; my wife and four children are the love of my life. I am glad to be able to go to church and live for the Lord,” says Roy, expressing his gratefulness in a heartfelt way.

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