Rutherford’s oldest living resident named Davy Days Grand Marshal

By Leslie Ferguson

Dorothy “Dot” Loggins recently received the surprise of her life.  Davy Days committee members bestowed the coveted title of Grand Marshal upon her.

“There weren’t any better choices than Mrs. Dot.  We didn’t even really consider anyone else, and it was just meant to be.  Mrs. Dot will be 99 years old on December 7.” said committee member Rhonda Poore,

Rhonda called to tell Dot’s daughter in California of the news before she told Dot.  “Do not let her say no.  She will try,” laughed daughter Sharon Gilbert.

Dot is a lifetime resident of Rutherford and grew up in the Bells Chapel Community. She finished school in the 10th grade because that’s as far as the school allowed.  She knew her husband Ruben Loggins Jr. way before marriage because he grew up right down the road from her.

The two married in Corinth, Miss. in 1942 while Ruben was enlisted in the U.S. Air Force. Dot recalled that one Christmas as a newly wed, she was only allowed to see her husband through the fence as he was deployed overseas.

In 1948, the two welcomed their only child, Sharon Lee Loggins, into the world.  They were and still are very proud parents. Dot spoke of the special relationship that Sharon had with her maternal grandfather from the moment he saw her in the hospital. “I can’t wait until she is big enough to cry to go home with us,” said Pa.

Dot stayed home with Sharon until she was nine. She then went to work for Kellwood.  Dot remembered the construction of Kellwood. She said the Rutherford gymnasium was set up with certain machines that they would be training on so they could be ready when the facility opened.

When you live to almost be a century, you see much more than most. Dot watched the doors open to her job at Kellwood and then watched them close not long after she retired.

Dot lost her husband in 2000, and she has spent almost the last 20 years taking care of herself and the home she and Ruben built in 1954.

When asked about her doll collection in her dining room, Dot proclaimed, “I never actually told anyone that I collected dolls. People just thought I did and those dolls just kept showing up.”

She does, however, have one particular doll that she asked Ruben to buy her for Valentine’s Day. She said this doll was too cute to pass up and has a particularly special meaning since his passing.

Dot still drives downtown every Thursday for her hair appointment with Cathy and to the dollar store. She sometimes goes out on a limb and drives to Dyer to see her sister-in-law but that’s “really pushing it,” said Dot.

Dot and her daughter have plans for some major shopping when she arrives home from California for Davy Days events. The two plan to get some new outfits for opening ceremonies, the grand marshal reception, and the parade.

Dot is looking forward to spending time with her daughter and enjoying all that Rutherford Davy Days has to offer, except at a little slower pace. She says that she doesn’t get around like she used to.

Mrs. Dorothy “Dot” Loggins is a true testimony to grace, hospitality, and humility. Davy Days is honoring a great lady that has stood the test of time, literally.

2 Comments

  1. Gwen McCaffrey McReynolds on October 5, 2018 at 7:17 pm

    I wish to make a few additions and corrections to the article.

    Dorothy Mildred Reed Loggins’ daughter is Sharon Sue, not Sharon Lee. The correct spelling for Dot’s husband is Reuben Wilson Loggins, Jr, not Ruben.

    Dorothy Mildred Reed graduated in the Class of 1937 from Rutherford High School. Her composite still sits proudly on her chest of drawers. She transferred there after attending Bells Chapel School.

    Dot started working for Rutherford garment factory before the building was built. She trained in the high school gym on the machines that were set up there. She worked at the factory during WWII while Reuben Wilson was serving in England during the War. I love to hear her tell the story of his return. She was working at her machine at the end of the war when she was summoned to the office. She was totally surprised when standing by the door was Sgt. Reuben Wilson Loggins, Jr., her husband newly returned from England where he had been stationed. The last time she had seen Reuben was Christmas Day 1942 when she saw him off on the train. He had shipped out just a few months after their 15 July 1942 Corinth marriage.

    Dot and Reuben built their house in 1950. It was the first house built on the GI Bill in Rutherford. The house of her sister-in-law was the second house built on the GI Bill during the same year.

    One thing I would like to add is that Dorothy Mildred has been a member of the Bells Chapel Cumberland Presbyterian Church all her life. Her grandfather, James Madison Reed, was one of the charter members of the congregation when it was chartered 23 July 1875. The Bell for whom the church was named was James Madison Reed’s uncle.

    I have known and loved Aunt Dot all my life for I am the daughter of the sister-in-law mentioned in the article.

    Gwen McCaffrey McReynolds

  2. Faye sharp on October 5, 2018 at 7:23 pm

    Congratulations to Dot. One of the sweetest and friendliest ladies I know. Daniel’s mother, Mary Sharp grew up with her in the Bells Chapel communit and thought highly of her. I am looking forward to seeing her. The last time I saw her she was still mighty spiffy. Sharon was always beautiful and sweet, also.

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