Loving others takes a gift of patience
LOOKING BACK Ida Vick shows some of the old bottles and antiques she has collected over the years. These items are displayed on old counter she used at her store, Brown's Grocery. Photo by Steve Swogetinsky/ The Meridian Star
By Steve Swogetinsky/regional editor
Jan. 13, 2002
Ida Vick was grown by the time she was 8-years-old. She had little choice in the matter after her mother died back in the 1930s.
It was up to her to raise two brothers and two sisters while also looking after her father. Later, she would run the family business, a popular store known as Brown's Grocery that was located on Poplar Springs Drive.
Her baby sister, Juanice Evans, was 1 when their mother died. To Evans, Ida was her sister and mother.
As a child, Vick's day started about 5 a.m. She ironed her family's clothes and made sure everyone left their house on Poplar Springs Drive with their hair combed.
She cooked on a wood stove, and breakfast usually consisted of biscuits and bacon.
She recalled an incident when her brothers left batteries on the stove. The batteries exploded, shaking the house and leaving a big mess.
Another time, her brothers were playing with matches and set the milk cow on fire.
She recalled taking Evans to Jeff Anderson Hospital to have her tonsils taken out.
After Juanice came to, she became upset and didn't want to go into the operating room alone.
She married her husband, Irvin, and they lived at the family home until all of the children were grown and on their own. She worked at Burnley Shirts factory until her father became ill. Then she took over the family business in 1965, and ran it until she closed in 1989.
Vick made a lot of friends during that time. Her customers often came to her to talk about things and get her advice on things.
She was robbed once. Two men came into the store. One knocked her employee down while another threatened her with a knife.
Vick said having patience with others is the key to being able to love them. When asked her philosophy of life, she said: "To be honest with one another and to show a lot of love.
Vick still misses the store and her customers. For a couple of years after she closed, they would have a reunion. But she didn't stop working once the store closed.
She also cooked dinner every Tuesday night for her church (Christian Fellowship), and continued doing so until her health wouldn't allow it. And there has been a many a Sunday that she fixed lunch for shut-ins and the elder. Vick did all of this until she had heart surgery this past summer.
Vick did other things besides work. She loves to garden and has a greenhouse full of plants. She also collects antiques and has beautiful arrangements of dishes, special plates and furniture in her house. She even has a wood stove, though she doesn't use it. In one part, she has the old counter where she sold candy when she ran her store.