SOUTH SHORE — On Tuesday, a man living just across the Grant Bridge will be celebrating a century of life full of gardening, faith, reading and solitaire.
Art Seelhorst has spent most of his 100 years in South Shore, moving there after spending his childhood in New Jersey. Named after his father, he moved to a family-owned farm in 1941 following graduation from Camden County Vocational School in 1940, with a degree in floriculture and landscaping gardening.
It was not long after when he was called into the armed forces. In 1942, Seelhorst was drafted into the United States Army Air Force later becoming a private in the fifth Air Force, fifth Bomber Command, in Port Moresby, New Guinea. He served all over the South Pacific until the end of WW II in 1945.
He arrived back home in December of that year and attended the University of Kentucky the following fall semester in 1946, where he graduated with a bachelor’s’s degree in Animal Husbandry in 1950. At UK, he was a member of the Wesley Foundation and it was there he met the love of his life, Judith Ann Barnett from Shelbyville, Kentucky They were married in Shelbyville at Centenary United Methodist Church Aug. 16, 1951.
They made their home in Siloam and reared four children, Rick (Susan), Tom (Charlene), Jim (Teresa) Seelhorst and Susan (Steve) Miller. Grandchildren: Daniel (Samantha) Seelhorst, Michael (Georgianna) Seelhorst, Stefanie Yates, Rachel Seelhorst, Jennifer Seelhorst, Rebecca (David) Spencer, Allen Seelhorst, William Seelhorst and Hannah (Jerry) Rowlands. Great-Grandchildren: Remy, Benedict and Richard Seelhorst, Pallus and Noble Seelhorst, and Abigail Spencer.
Art and Judy were married for 64 yrs. Judy died at the age of 89 in 2015. Seelhorst was a farmer for 26 years, working for his Aunt Estelle McKell for a number of years before owning Seelhorst’s Eggs.
He has been a member of South Shore United Methodist Church since it’s inception in the 1950s. Seelhorst sang in the church choir until a few years ago and served as chairperson and trustee of the church board and many committees down through the years.
He was elected to the Greenup County Board of Education in 1968 where he served for eight years. In 1976, he retired from farming and went to Morehead State University and received a degree in education and taught Horticulture at the Greenup County Vocational School until retiring in 1986. Art is a lifelong learner.
Seelhort’s love of gardening grew from a very early age when he would help his mother with the flower and vegetable gardens at their home in New Jersey, summer farm in New York and then on the farm in South Shore. His gardens were always bountiful enough to feed the family through each year.
He continues to enjoy plants, is an avid reader, enjoys bird watching, music, cartography, meteorology, playing pinochle, playing solitaire on the computer, looking at stamps and keeping a watchful eye on his health and nutrition.
When recently asked the secret to his longevity, he replied,” God’s grace, a loving family and I have had a lot of help from a lot of people along the way.”
This Saturday, friends and neighbors are invited to a drive-thru parade to wish him a happy birthday between 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. at 34 Banner Road in South Shore.
© 2021 Portsmouth Daily Times, all rights reserved.