LIVERMORE – Billie Gammon celebrated her 90th birthday among family and friends at the North Livermore Baptist Church.

Gammon was born in Augusta, but came to Livermore to teach in the second year of her career in the fall of 1935. When asked what she attributes her own health and longevity to, she said, “Sweet potatoes and spinach – eat a lot of both.”

The evening began with cake and punch at the church. Pastor Rick Messena opened with a prayer, “Bless this day, and what a blessing Billie is to all of us,” he said. After the sweets, the festivities moved upstairs in the church, where Gammon told the history of Julia Chase Washburn, a teacher born in Turner in 1840, who taught freed slaves in Washington, D.C., in 1865. Washburn later started the North Livermore Reading Club.

After Gammon’s birthday celebration, Livermore celebrated its own birthday on Long Pond where there was a parade of paddle boats, canoes and kayaks. Buildings all around the lake were lit up as if it were Christmas in August, and several campfires could be seen. Later, powerboats made their rounds on the pond.

The evening ended with a hot dog roast outside the Lakeshore Restaurant, with proceeds to be used for fireworks at next year’s celebration.

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