City Councilman Mike Driscoll on Saturday presented a Council citation and a letter from Mayor Jim Kenney, congratulating Mayfair’s Charles W. Smith on his 100th birthday.
Smith turns 100 on Wednesday, Dec. 21. Interestingly, he celebrated his birthday most of his life on Dec. 22, with his birth year believed to be 1921, until the Social Security Administration detected the error about 20 years ago.
Smith celebrated his birthday with his seven children and other family and friends at Soul Anchor of Burlington (New Jersey).
Smith was born in Philadelphia, the sixth of 10 children, to Reynolds W. Smith and Anna Mae Long. Because of the Great Depression, Smith and his younger brother, LeRoy, were sent to live on a dairy farm in Lancaster County at ages 13 and 11 years, respectively, working as farmhands and learning all about rural life and hunting.
Smith enlisted in the U.S. Army and served in World War II.
After returning to Philadelphia, he was introduced to Rosalie D. DelFranco, who lived in Brooklyn. The two were married at the old Our Lady of Mercy Roman Catholic Church, Broad Street and Susquehanna Avenue. They remained married for 64 years before she passed away in 2012.
Smith worked at Yale and Towne Manufacturing and Monarch Foods until retiring.
“You’ve really had a wonderful life,” Driscoll said. ••