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By Austin Crosier

Helen Macura smiles for the camera.

It’s becoming more and more challenging to celebrate within a community during the age of COVID-19.

However, the global pandemic will have no chance of wiping off the always present smile of Helen Macura of Granville, who will be celebrating her 98th birthday on Thursday.

She will be having a catered “little luncheon” at her house on East Main Street on Tuesday with close friends and family, hosted by her sister and brother-in-law, Theresa and Simon Sulzer.

Of course, Macura wants to make sure her driveway isn’t cluttered so guests and caterers can come and go freely without issues.

“I told everybody, no parking in the driveway!” Macura said emphatically. “The caterer’s gotta have the room for the kitchen door, and ‘Cookie’ (Macura’s niece, Mary-Sue) is having this lady who is a baker in Rupert, Vermont make the cake.”

Macura described herself as “ambitious,” “adventurous” and as someone who “always wants to help somebody.”

“After working for over 30 years in nursing, I’d say I was hard-working,” Macura said. “I had three times I was given an award in my nursing career.”

Macura spent her time working at Mary McClellan Hospital in Cambridge and Glens Falls Hospital, as well as private duties throughout upstate New York.

With more than three decades of experience working in hospitals, it’s safe to say Macura has seen the good, the bad and the ugly. However, she loves to reminisce in her positive impact on those in need, especially during the holiday season.

“I worked every Christmas, I worked every holiday. I could make their Christmas a little bit happier by singing, telling stories and jokes and some of them, I’d bring little gifts to,” Macura said. “I’d hand them a little gift and say, ‘well this is what Santa left and he said to give it to you!’ I think those were the happiest moments. Helping the patients during the holiday time. That was many years and many times.”

On top of her time as a nurse, Macura published multiple stories in the Granville Sentinel, ranging from short stories and fun facts to whatever she was asked to do.

Macura said her greatest accomplishment in her life was that she made a lot of friends, something she is very passionate about.

Macura’s impact on her community has been felt for almost all her life and she said she wants to be remembered as a persistent individual who could be trusted and counted on with any task.

“Being a kind, good friend and neighbor always there to help,” Macura said. “I never say ‘no,’ I don’t know the word ‘no’.”

 

 

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