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Fayetteville woman turns 100

Kay Eggleston may be the village’s oldest homeowner

On July 1, Fayetteville resident Kay Eggleston celebrated her 100th birthday. Eggleston has lived on Brooklea Drive for 70 years. She received many gifts from friends near and far for her birthday, including 100 birthday cards, sent to her doorstep by members of the Onondaga County American Legion, which she’s been a member of for 64 years.

On July 1, Fayetteville resident Kay Eggleston celebrated her 100th birthday. Eggleston has lived on Brooklea Drive for 70 years. She received many gifts from friends near and far for her birthday, including 100 birthday cards, sent to her doorstep by members of the Onondaga County American Legion, which she’s been a member of for 64 years. Submitted photo

— Kay Eggleston has seen a lot during the 70 years she’s lived on Brooklea Drive in the village of Fayetteville.

She remembers when Fayetteville and Manlius joined together into one centralized school district in the 1950s – “The kids didn’t like the fact that anyone was coming in from Manlius. We were kind of snippy in Fayetteville [back then]”.

She can recite in order nearly all of the shops and homes in the center of the village and who they were owned by – “There was a big, beautiful brick house where Friendly’s used to be, but it was torn down. And across Route 5, Immaculate Conception Church and the Rectory were where M&T Bank is now. Across Salt Springs Road, there’s the antique place – two little old ladies owned that house. They lived in New York City and came up every summer and rocked on that front porch.”

One of her favorite early Fayetteville memories is from her days working at the village polling place, which was located where the Hornet’s Nest on Brooklea Drive is now.

“I had just moved from Syracuse, where it was split pretty evenly between Democrats and Republicans,” she said. “I got such a kick out of the fact that they couldn’t find any Democrats to work at the polls! It’s more equal now, but I was shocked at how everyone here was registered as Republican. I had always lived in an area where it was more split.”

Eggleston was born in Camillus on July 1, 1914 to Anna and Andrew Nagel. Her father had recently immigrated to America from Germany and was employed by Camillus Cutlery. There was a boarding house where the single men who worked for the Cutlery lived – her father ran the facility and her mother was the cook/housekeeper. Eggleston started school in Camillus and later attended North Syracuse Elementary School and North High School. She then attended and graduated from Syracuse’s Central City Business Institute and became a bookkeeper for Vandenburg REO, an automobile agency on West Genesee Street in Syracuse at 16 years old.

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