by Barbara A. Oliver, Managing Editor

005p1BULLARD, Tex. (BNc) – On Oct. 31, 1909, twin girls, Lella and Ella Harris, were born at Peachtree Village in Tyler County, Tex. On Oct. 31, 2009, the Bullard church celebrated Lella Harris Stripling’s 100th birthday and honored her twin sister Ella Harris Keele, who died in July.

Their baby brother, Homer will be 95 on Nov. 25.

When asked what he could tell me about Lella Harris Stripling, Richard Fedell, one of the ministers for the Bullard church, said, “Have you got three days?”

Friends and relatives gathered at the fellowship building of the church to celebrate with Lella. While over 350 people signed her guest book, only 45 were family members.

“That shows you how well she is loved,” said Fedell.

Lella graduated from Bullard High School in 1928 and married Fred Stripling in 1929. They farmed and operated grocery stores in Teaselville and Bullard and raised three children.

She still attends school activities with her children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and great-great grandchildren. After almost 65 years together, Fred died in July 1994.

Lella is an active member of the Bullard church, a congregation of about 100.

“She knows her Bible,” said Fedell. “A very spry lady, she never misses a service. She is a great example to the church and to the community as well.”

She also works with her brother at the Bullard Cemetery Association.