By Christy Porter, Managing Editor
“Queen of the Day” Doris Lay enjoyed a full afternoon visiting with over 131 family and friends at Boone Creek Baptist Church on Saturday, as she celebrated her 100th birthday. Her birthday is Wednesday, November 8.
The matriarch with a family of three daughters and a “gob” of grandkids, which include five grandchildren, 15 great-grandchildren and 17 great-great-grandchildren, the youngest being two months old, happily welcomed family from as far away as Georgia, New York, Michigan, Colorado and the St. Louis area. Maine, Hawaii and Illinois relatives unfortunately could not make it. Multiples of five generations were present at her birthday party.
Family and friends of Lay kept a consistent stream of visitors that reminisced, laughed and shared their lives, and refreshments, throughout the day.
Lay was born Doris Scott on a farm outside of Raymondville, where she was also raised.
She attended a few one-room schoolhouses, remembering especially Possum Trot. The school was 2-1/2-miles away, so she and her siblings rode a horse to school, where the horse remained tied up during the school session. The three siblings, plus two neighbor children, rode with three in the saddle and two behind the saddle.
Lay is a 1942 Licking High School graduate, and she has attended all her class reunions and most of the banquets.
She married Paul Linsan, with whom she had a family. They also enjoyed an expansive trip out west. She remarried to Bob Lay, after Linsan’s passing.
“I have worked hard all my life and enjoyed quilting, gardening and travel,” shared Lay.
She worked at International Shoe, and then retired from H.D. Lee in Houston. While raising her family and working outside the home, she also kept 50-head of cattle until she moved into town, first at senior housing, then she bought a home where she lived for 22-years. She moved in with the kids in 2022.
The arrangement has gone well, said Lay, “I do or don’t do what I want. They still may offer suggestions, or say, ‘Do what you want.’”
Trips to Australia, where they had lots of cattle, and New Zealand, where there were lots of sheep, were greatly enjoyed and informative. Her travels have also taken her to the eastern, southern and northern United States.
“There is no place I’d rather live. I appreciate everybody, my church and my community,” said Lay.