By MIKE WILLIAMS
During Monday night’s meeting of the Pulaski County Board of Supervisors – in honor of Black History Month – County Administrator Jonathan Sweet made a presentation on the life and works of Mary Sue Montgomery (1894-1967).
In 1954, Sweet said, Montgomery erected a nursing home at 147 Magazine Street in Pulaski to serve the needs of the elderly and indigent of both races during the Jim Crow era.
Sweet read that Montgomery traveled to New York City to appear on “Strike it Rich,” a game show that was broadcast on American radio and television.
Participants on the show answered four questions in an effort to win money for someone in need of medical treatment or some other need.
Montgomery competed on the nationwide program in an effort to raise funds to keep her nursing home open.
“She answered all the questions asked during the show and received $170,” Sweet read. “She used the money to erect the steel for the first floor of a new cinderblock home that at the time was being built next to the existing home.
Montgomery was also honored as Pulaski’s Woman of the Year by the Business and Professional Woman’s Club, Sweet added.
In announcing Ms. Montgomery’s award, Mrs. George T. Carnahan – who won the award in 1952 – called Montgomery’s work with her nursing home “a true monument of faith and love the county should be proud of.”
In accepting her award, Montgomery said, “The people of Pulaski County are the most wonderful people on the face of the earth. They are the salt of the earth.”
Sweet noted that Montgomery passed away in 1967 at her nursing home.
“She will be forever remembered as a beacon of service in Pulaski County,” Sweet added.