North Attleborough resident celebrates 100th birthday

0
7
Molly Calcagni [left] with her daughter Janet Peabody. Molly recently celebrated her 100th birthday, and has lived her entire life in North Attleborough. Staff Photo/Max Bowen

By Max Bowen-max.bowen@northstarreporter.com

One only has to spend a short time in the home of Molly Calcagni to see that she has lived a full life.

In the living room, photos of family are everywhere, and her memories of her 46-year marriage and friends she grew up with are spoken of in a heartfelt manner. Calcagni, who celebrated her 100th birthday on July 30, was born in North Attleborough and lived her entire life in the town.

Her early years were spent on Smith Street, and after marrying Joseph Calcagni, they moved to Charles Street, where she lives today, in a lovely home on the water. Joseph passed away 27 years ago, but the two made some wonderful memories. Molly said their marriage had some ups and downs, but they always worked it out.

The two met shortly after Joseph returned home from World War II. Molly had known the family for years through Joseph’s sisters and a few weeks after he came home, he called to ask her out. Though their plans to see the Taunton lights that evening didn’t quite work out, they still got to spend some time together.

We had a good life together,” said Molly. “He was a good man.”

When asked why she stayed in North Attleborough throughout her life, Molly said it was a good town and the people have always been friendly, especially her neighbors. In fact, her parents settled in North Attleborough after emigrating from Italy, and much of her family lives in town. She said a lot has changed over the years.

I go along with everything,” she said.

Molly worked until she and her husband retired at the age of 62. She joked that she had wanted to continue working until 65, but her Joseph had wanted them to retire together. Among her jobs was the H.F. Barrows Manufacturing Company, one of the town’s most successful jewelry companies, situated in what is now the police station. There, she made gold lockets.

They had me try it out and I could do it,” said Molly.

Molly said she likes to stay busy, and after retiring, she volunteered at the Senior Center, packing meals for home-bound seniors for 11 years. Up until the pandemic, she was also active in her church, St. Mark’s, and enjoys a good game of Bingo.

You get to see people and meet people,” she said of her work with the Senior Center.

In the living room of Molly’s home are several cards and keepsakes from the 100-year celebration. She said that despite the pandemic, she’s doing OK.

I feel pretty good,” she said.