Former Post-Searchlight reporter turned 100 earlier this month

Published 5:08 pm Tuesday, October 17, 2017

On Sunday, October 1, 2017, Iris Brock Harrell , surrounded with family and friends, celebrated her 100th birthday. Her birthday is actually October 2nd.

In 1940, Iris Brock married Hubert Harrell and they made their home in the Black Jack Community of Bainbridge.  After several years of marriage, they still had no children, though they sincerely wanted some. In May 1949, they adopted a seven-month-old boy and named him Nolan Dewayne Harrell. 

They were very excited about their new addition and Iris wrote an announcement of his arrival and asked for it to be be published in The Post-Searchlight. After reading her announcement, Marvin Griffin, the publisher at that time, asked Iris if she would write a weekly news article for the paper about happenings in the Black Jack Community.  She began writing the Black Jack News and continued to write the article for fifty years. In 2000, at the age of 83, she stopped writing the article. When her daughter asked her what caused her to make that decision, she explained that her career of writing began with the announcement of her son’s arrival and she felt the time had come for her to stop writing when her son, Nolan, passed away at the age of 52 that year.

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She was well known for her contribution to the area through her news article. She wrote about family, friends, weddings, funerals, reunions, births, church happenings and most anything of interest in the community.  Many people have shared how they enjoyed and appreciated reading her news article. 

Often people who moved away from Bainbridge would retain their subscription to The Post-Searchlight so they could keep up with in Black Jack Community happenings through her article. 

Even today, 17 years after she stopped writing, people comment on how they looked forward to her news article each week. She loved writing and has a considerable collection of poems she has written over years, many of which talk about her strong faith, her observations of life, and tidbits of wit and wisdom. At age 100, she still recognizes family members and makes quite witty comments keeping people entertained.  Many people will remember that a common phrase used in her article was, ‘…and a good time was had by all’, which could surely be said about her 100th birthday party.