Published 2:35 pm Friday, May 8, 2020

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By: Kaitlin Holley

These Andalusia locals are celebrating Mother’s Day in a special way as they have four to five generations of mothers in their families.

Working mother Madison Parrish has four generations and works with women all day.

She is a Straughn High School alumna and works as a sonographer at Covington OBGYN as well as an ultrasonographer at Andalusia Health.

Brenda Sanders is Madison’s grandmother and lives to serve others as she works at Smith Insurance Agency in Florala.

“I know everyone says this, but my mom, Amy Herrington, is the best mom,” Parrish said. “She has always and still encourages and pushes me to meet my goals. She’s the best role model I could ask for as far as strong women go. No matter what life throws her way, she can overcome it and come out on top. She’s also the most amazing MiMi to my daughter, Elli, and my niece, Laurel. We love you so much, MiMi, and are so thankful for you. My grandma is another strong female role model I’ve had to look up to. She also keeps Ell, my daughter, while I work and we are so thankful for her.”

Mother Nikki Coleman has five generations to celebrate this Mother’s Day. The generations keep in close proximity with each other and Coleman feels blessed to have all of her family near. Coleman has five generations on her mothers’ side and amazingly has four generations of girls.

“We have five generations on my mom’s side and four generations of girls,” Coleman said. “It starts with my grandmother Mavis Sutton is 89 years old and my mother Frances Sutton is 67, then myself Nikki Coleman. I am 42, my son is 25 and then his son is 5. Additionally, I have a daughter, Ashlee Coleman. She is 19.”

Coleman advises all the mothers out there to spend as much time with the babies because they grow up to fast. Her family also keeps in close contact with each other. Her grandmother is in the Andalusia Manor and her mom lives close by. Her son and daughter live at home and they value family.  Coleman has been calling her grandmother in the nursing home frequently since COVID-19 allows no visitors.

“I would like to wish all the mothers out there a Happy Mother’s Day,” Coleman said.

Pleasant Home Math teacher Jessica Ward is proud of her generations and the bond that the women in her family share.

“We have four generations alive now,” Ward said. “All four generations have ties to Pleasant Home School. My grandmother, Mary Nell Little, 79, worked at Alatex sewing for many years. She then worked at Pleasant Home School in the lunchroom where she eventually retired. My mom Sheila Youngblood is 60 and also worked at Pleasant Home School as a bus driver and in the lunchroom for a few years. She’s currently been employed at Andalusia Hospital for 30 years.”

Ward just completed her 16th year of teaching.

“I’ve been employed at Pleasant Home School for the past 10 years,” Ward said. “I currently teach junior high and high school math. My daughter, Hailey Ward, 14, is an upcoming freshman at Pleasant Home. My mother and I both graduated from PHS as well as my son Hunter Ward, 20. My daughter should also graduate from there in 2024.

Family is very important to Ward because she understands how much her mom and grandmother have influenced her life.

“Both my mother and grandmother have played very huge roles in my life,” Ward said. “I grew up in the church thanks to them. My grandmother played the piano, but only by ear. My mom and I taught GAs and VBS together for several years. Our four generations of women are super close. Both of my grandparents have started suffering from Alzheimer’s in the past few years. Times are tough but my mom has moved in with them and is doing what she can to take care of Granny and Paw Paw while being a wife, mother, and grandmother. She’s one of the strongest women I know.”