The Waxahachie Senior Activity Center will honor an icon Monday night when Mattie Borders is crowned queen for the center's inaugural Fourth of July Celebration.

In her 103 years, Borders has worked to make Waxahachie a better place for everyone through her service as a teacher, funeral director and member of numerous boards and commissions. When there was a need to help the working poor in the city, Borders stepped in and founded Waxahachie CARE in 1982. The community food pantry now on Ferris Avenue is still going strong today.

Borders said she has labored for one simple reason: she loves people and loves being around them.

"Well, I just enjoy people. I organized the food bank, I taught school for 26 years and I was in the funeral business for 50 years," Borders said. "I have enjoyed life with people."

The center plays a major role in the lives of so many people in the community including hers, Borders said. She was shocked to hear she had been selected queen, she said.

"I like to meet with people and just enjoy life. You meet different people and they have different ideas, different thoughts, different activities, and I just appreciate and enjoy all of them," Borders said. "It's great and wonderful. I appreciate it. I am thankful I live where people appreciate me."

Waxahachie Senior Activity Center director Jeanee Smiles said Borders was selected for the honor because of the significant role she has played in the community and the example she has been to others.

"You know this is our very first senior Fourth of July celebration. It is befitting that our first inaugural queen be our oldest member, which is Ms. Mattie. We honor Ms. Mattie every year at every birthday. Anytime she comes in that center she is a special gift to us," Smiles said "I have been in Waxahachie for the last 20 years, and she has been my inspiration and my icon because of her incredible achievements as a woman. The fact is that so many people honor and love her. It just reminds me if that you are good and kind and love people it will always come back to you. Look what she has. That is her legacy to love people."

Before the celebration starting at 7 p.m. on Monday, Borders and family friends will be picked by a limo and taken to the center. When Borders arrives, she will open the event with a few words and be crowned as queen by Waxahachie Mayor Kevin Strength before Forreston Baptist Church pastor Jason Harris says a prayer.

The Fourth of July celebration at the center will have food trucks, live music from Dave Eder and the Final Showdown Band, children's activities and fireworks show that starts about 8:30 or 9 p.m. The Waxahachie Senior Activity Center is located at 122 Park Hills Dr. in Waxahachie.

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