Mayo High School alum to celebrate 101st birthday on Saturday

Pee Dee

DARLINGTON, S.C. (WBTW) — Ethel Bramhan of Darlington will be 101 years old on Saturday.

She spoke with News13’s Lacey Lee Thursday about her life, her love for God, family and making cakes, just to name a few things that she holds dear to her heart.

“Woo, I’m wonderful,” Bramhan said. “When I was coming up you know, they said, ‘child you’re going to live a long life.’ ”

During her 100 years of life, Bramhan gave birth to nine kids, and she now has 45 grandchildren, 25 great-grandchildren and 2 great-great grandkids.

“When she had us coming up she had us stand by her when she was cooking,” Ethe’s daughter, Fran Goodson, said. “She did so much stuff. She preserved. We watched the preserving. We used to go out in the woods and pick blueberries, blackberries. She canned a lot. She taught us how to survive.”

Bramhan recalls after she graduated from Mayo High School in Darlington back in the late 1930’s – which was the first of 3 African-American public high schools in SC to be accredited by the State Dept. of Ed during the early 1920s. Her daughter said she’s the school’s oldest living alumni. Bramhan says she moved up north after graduating to provide for the ones she loved the most.

“When I left here, when I went to New York that’s where I lived the most of my life in Brooklyn, New York,” Bramhan said. “That’s where my money came. I worked came back home to Darlington for my mother. I had to do what I had to do because they always told me that I’m going to live a long life when I was coming up.”

Bramhan also had her own catering business in Darlington and worked at The Lunch Box on Pearl Street.

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