In 1969, 9-year old Russell Capper sent a letter to President Nixon suggesting a special day be set aside for Gran and Gramps. He wasn’t successful, but he planted the seed for Marian McQuade. She served on the West Virginia Commission on Aging and the Nursing Home Licensing Board, and she took up the cause.
Fast forward to 1978 when President Jimmie Carter called McQuade to tell her he had just signed a bill declaring the first Sunday after Labor Day National Grandparents’ Day.
Fast forward again to 2020 when the students of Agape Montessori Christian Academy decided to honor their grandparents pandemic-style with a drive through parade Thursday.
As car after car drove slowly past the historic Planters Hall building in Vicksburg, they were regaled with excited shouts of “Happy Grandparents’ Day!” “There’s my Pop Pop!” and “Hey Granny!” up and down the block. Students of all ages had made brightly colored posters and signs to shake and honor their parents’ parents.
When asked why she was cheering, 9-yr-old Hannah Claire Steele said, “Because my grandparents are like, way cooler than regular parents. Even when I mess up big, they don’t get mad at me at all!”
Cayden Causey, also 9, added, “Yeah! If I get mad at my mom or dad, I just call my grandparents and tell on them. And then my mom and dad are the ones in trouble.”
Trip Williams, 10, summed it up this way: “My Papaw is in heaven but he’s still watching me down here,” he said. “And he was very grand. The grandest. Hey! I can call him my ‘grandangel,’ right? I think that’s pretty awesome!”
Watch the live video of the parade on the VDN Facebook page.