105-year-old casting a ballot this election encourages others to do the same

105-year-old voter set to pick her next president.
105-year-old voter set to pick her next president.

AUGUSTA, Ga. (WJBF) – An Augusta voter hopes her longevity at the polls will encourage others to cast a ballot. She was 21-years-old when she cast her first ballot for president of the United States.  Edna Bush hasn’t missed an election since that day and she’s planning to vote in the general election next month at the age of 105.

“The only way to support whoever will be elected is by voting,” said Edna Bush, who lives in Augusta.

You don’t have to tell her it’s important to vote.  She knows.

“There is so much violence in the world and there’s so many homeless people in the world, so many hungry people and they’re so many people who are being unjustly treated,” said Bush, who told us her maiden name is Edna Phoenix.

The Barnwell native is the 8th of 13 kids born to a farmer and his wife. She was born November 21, 1910.  She taught for 40 years in South Carolina schools, married a man who served as pastor of Moses Missionary Baptist Church, in Augusta, for nearly four decades and they raised four children. And a century plus 5 years later, she still remembers the first man she helped put in the White House.

“The first president I voted for was Franklin D. Roosevelt,” she recalled.

FDR was elected in 1932 and Bush said the way whites treated blacks back then pushed her to the polls.

“I used to wonder why I had to walk and the whites rode the bus. We were walking to school and they would throw trash out of the bus at us walking,” she said explaining the climate of her Barnwell community as a child.

There have been 13 men to hold the highest office in the country since Bush first voted.  Her favorite, she exclaimed, was John F. Kennedy. And then she helped elect the first African-American president, Barack Obama.

“Oh I thought that was the grandest thing. I wish I could have voted 20 times,” she said.

In this election, she has already pledged to go with “Her.”

“She seems to have a little more compassion and she’s more interested in our fellow man than how much she owns,” Bush said.

Bush added that she will write-in soon to request an absentee ballot to vote for Clinton.  She said she’s been voting absentee since she’s been up in age. She hopes her family and others carry on her legacy of voting in order to help change the country.

Those not registered to vote can join Bush, but you must register by Tuesday in both Georgia and South Carolina.

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