• 57°

Laying their cards on the table

Card players gathered again at Jo-Lin Nursing Center two days before a national holiday honoring some of them.

Every Friday, several senior citizens and residents get together to play Euchre at Jo-Lin. When this began two years ago, one table would be used for playing. Now, four to five tables are needed.

"This is an addiction, you know that?" said Thelma Hobart, one of the seniors who comes to play. "The more you play, the more you want to play."

"I'll never forget one time when I was playing this game when a woman spilled her beer and showed her ace," said Norma Thompson, 77, who came to play.

Hobart and Thompson also gather with others at the Ironton City Center to play cards.

"I wonder why the mayor

(Bob Cleary) hasn't thrown us out," Hobart joked. "We carry on so much, and we're right underneath his office. He socializes with us quite a bit."

Even though Mayor Cleary hasn't joined in a card game with them, he is more than welcome, Hobart added.

With today being Grandparent Day, the two card players took the time to brag on their grandchildren.

Thompson is the mother of 11 children, grandmother to 17 and also has three great-grandchildren.

"I get to enjoy my grandchildren, but when I get tired, I can send them home," she said. "The best part is hearing them tell me they love me."

"I love the hugs and appreciation from my grandchildren," Hobart added. "I have one grandchild, plus 15-25 foster grandchildren at Central Christian Daycare. Any time someone yells 'Grandma', I answer."

Other players have never had that experience.

Joan Akers, a resident at Jo-Lin, said Grandparents' Day is sometimes a sad time for her.

"I had it all planned out," she said. "I wanted a husband, a white picket fence, a little boy and girl and a white house. But I have no family except for some cousins that I see a lot."

Another resident, Jim Robinson also has no children or grandchildren. He said he regrets not having children, but the holidays have never really bothered him. Amelia Pridemore/The Ironton Tribune