A longtime Richmond resident who turned 100 years old on July 26 is an original Rosie the Riveter, having worked at the Kaiser Shipyards during WWII.
And to this day, she beat practically anyone in dominoes, bid whist and spades.
On Tuesday, July 23, Eddie Mae Crummie was honored at Richmond City Council with a proclamation three days ahead of her centennial birthday. The city credited her for being active in the community and “cherished by loved ones for her kind personality and philanthropic service.”
Crummie was born in Oklahoma and moved to Richmond with her family at an early age. She’s been a member of both the North Richmond Baptist Church and the Pilgrim Rest Baptist Church in Richmond. She organized a Domino Club where she hosted regular game nights with loved ones. She still enjoys playing.
Over a dozen of Crummie’s loved ones attended Tuesday’s proclamation ceremony. At the time, she was in the hospital recovering from an illness, but was expected home the following day. Her large family and loved ones had planned a birthday celebration for the weekend.
Mayor Tom Butt and Councilmember Nat Bates presented a grandson of Crummie’s with the proclamation and gifts.
“Most of us know, longevity is God given,” Bates said. “To have a beautiful young lady who has contributed to much to the city of Richmond to still be with us is a blessing indeed.”
Community advocate Antwon Cloird lauded the Crummie family as special, loving, and a living representation of an old time when there was more unity and community in the city of Richmond, and the nation as a whole. The sense of community was especially strong in pre-1980s Richmond, “before the crack epidemic,” Cloird said.
“Our communities were based on love,” Cloird said, adding that the Crummie family, which he married into, has continued that legacy for generations.
“When you went to these people’s house, they played cards, and spade and dominoes and ate good watermelon and had some good BBQs,” he said.
Cloird said deep political and cultural divisions both nationally and locally threaten to extinguish that sense of community and unity.
“We can start by loving more like the Crummies,” he said. “Their doors were always open. They always had a pot of food open for somebody. I don’t care who you was, if you walked in them doors, you ate some good food. That was taught to them, that was bred in them. And we need to get back to that mindset where we are loving each other again.”