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Celebration, reception held for McDonald

A reception and tea were held in Millie McDonald’s honor on Wednesday to celebrate her success as Ms.  Alabama Nursing Home.

A reception and tea were held in Millie McDonald’s honor on Wednesday to celebrate her success as Ms. Alabama Nursing Home.

It was a reception fit for a queen in the Camellia City on Wednesday, complete with lavish refreshments, beautiful flowers and a gracious member of royalty present.

Millie McDonald, retired music educator and the reigning Ms. Alabama Nursing Home, was feted by Crowne Health Care of Greenville this week with a gala reception at First Baptist Church’s Family Life Center.

Her blue eyes sparkling almost as much as her tiara, McDonald beamed with pleasure as a number of family members, friends, local dignitaries, fellow Crowne residents and staff and former students stopped in offer their congratulations.  Some could only visit briefly, while others stayed to partake of the numerous trays of pastel iced cupcakes, dainty sandwiches, cheese straws and other finger foods on offer, along with cups of lemonade.

McDonald admitted she was bowled over by the efforts made to honor her crowning achievement.

“People have come from as far away as Huntsville and from down south to be here today. And it’s just been an exciting experience,” the honoree said.

Greenville’s mayor, Dexter McLendon presented “Miss” Millie, as she is affectionately known to many, with an official certificate of recognition honoring her for her state title.

“This was just awesome. I certainly didn’t expect that,” said McDonald as she nodded toward the plaque, displayed next to her chair. “So many nice things have come my way since this award.”

It was an award she said she never expected to win.

“You know, when I got up there to Birmingham for the pageant, I looked around and I saw 53 lovely little ladies—and I decided this was a bigger deal than I had realized,” she said with a sheepish expression.

“I really thought for sure this little lady to my left was going to win, but lo and behold—who knows?”

McDonald, who taught music and voice in Butler County Public Schools for many years, continued working part-time with schools throughout the county after her official retirement, as well as giving private piano and voice lessons. She also performed as guest vocalist at many area churches and as the music director for numerous area revivals.

And McDonald still loves to sing the praises of her hometown and its citizens.

“There are so many wonderful people here . . . from the little bitty ones to those way on up there—my age. And it’s a wonderful town,” said McDonald.

Next official duty for the reigning Ms. Alabama Nursing Home: an appearance at a medical equipment convention in Birmingham later this month.

“And I am really looking forward to that . . . I appreciate so much Crowne’s support and encouragement all along the way and everyone who turned out today for this,” McDonald said.

“It means a lot to me.”