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Recognized as a Living Legend of Port Norris on November 2, 2019
Presentation given at the Legends Awards on November 2, 2019
by Elaine Morton Rankin
For full view click the play button and then click on the 4 corners box in the lower right corner. Apologies for the bad camera angles.
Irene is a mother, a Sister, an Aunt, Grand-mother, Great-Grandmother, Great-Great Grandmother and wife to the late Melvin J. Green Sr. Being the eldest of 6 children, she was born and reared in Haleyville, New Jersey (Commercial Twp.) to her late mother Bernita Smith on July 3, 1934, and until this day she is always proud to say she was born and raised in Haleyville!
She was educated through the Commercial Township School System at the Port Norris Elementary/High School with completion through the 12th grade in 1943.
Immediately after graduating high school she began her employment in the Oyster
& Claim Industry while doing homework and taking care of her neighbor’s children!
She then went on to work at the Vineland State School (currently known as the Vineland Developmental Center) where she retired after 37 years of service!
She joined John Wesley United Methodist Church in 1968 under the ministerial leadership of the late Rev. John E. Bishop. As a member there she served as an Usher, Communion Stewart, worked with the Youth Choir and Vacation Bible School during the summer, in the late years, she joined the Chancellor Choir, the Mass Choir, the Finance committee and served as a delegate of the Southern New Jersey Methodist Conference since 2005 until just a few years ago! She has taken her seat and enjoys church services and Bible Study under Rev. Thomas
James. Church has always been instrumental in her life and was very important to her to instill in her children.
Working side-by-side with her late husband Melvin Sr., they reared 10 children, Diane, Linwood, Bonnie (Eddie), Carolyn (Pal), Sharon, twins Robert and Robin, Michael, Avonda (Earl) and Melvin Jr. all of which are grown and have families of their own! Her continuous prayer is for the church membership to grow and the Youth choir returns and be even stronger than years in the past.
Irene’s current activities include; dual membership of the Ravishing Royal Red Hatters and the Haleyville-Mauricetown Red Hatters Clubs. She enjoys traveling every chance she gets just recently returning from California attending her grandson’s college graduation, months prior she cruised out of Florida celebrating her great grandson’s birthday and will soon be traveling to Georgia to visit her grandchildren there! Though she is no longer driving she still tries to go and
participate at the Louise E. Moore Senior Center in Commercial Township for lunch, Bingo, exercise classes, holiday and Seasonal activities and local trips!
When she looks back over her life; she is thankful to have good health, strength and peace of mind. She is blessed for the health of her children and they all are regular church attenders. She is blessed and thankful to have wonderful friends near and far and is blessed to be surrounded with excellent neighbors!
Irene’s favorite scripture is the 23rd Psalms, the Lord is her Shepard and she wants for nothing!!! Her favorite song is “I’ll Understand it Better Bye & Bye” Her secret to longevity is treating everybody with respect and love and to keep moving. Praise God!!!