The story of Lillian Foust Mobley: 100 years and counting

Lillian Foust Mobley celebrated her 100th birthday on Sept. 22, 2022. (Delton Blalock)

A lady of great accomplishment and longevity celebrated her 100th birthday on Sept. 22, 2022. She was born on Sept. 22, 1922, to Samuel Andrew Foust and Jessie Dodson Foust.

She is the oldest of 40 grandchildren. Mrs. Mobley’s Foust family came to America (i.e., Peter) just a few years after the Revolutionary War. Peter was born in Germany in June 1776. It is very fitting that the Foust family name in Germany means “lucky” or “fortunate.” That sure applies to Lillian Foust Mobley.

Mrs. Lillian’s parents were married in 1921. They moved several times in the 1920s and 30s. So, their daughter attended serval different schools, including Bolte, East Cullman, Grandview and Good Hope.

Mrs. Lillian married J.C. Mobley in 1940. Kenneth was born in 1941, Delean in 1943 and Sammy several years later in 1950. Son Kenneth died Oct. 11, 2003, in a traffic accident in Tennessee. Sammy died Oct. 7, 2021, from cancer. Daughter Delean married Gary Williams, and they currently reside southwest of Jones Chapel. Mrs. Mobley has three grandsons, one granddaughter and several great-grandchildren.

While growing up, she was an excellent student and full of adventure, especially at home and at family get-togethers. She was very strong and athletic and plowed a mule before age 13. After she and J.C. were married, they purchased a farm overlooking Ryan’s Creek on Trimble Road (County Road 222). They made a great team growing row crops and eventually had a very successful egg business next to Trimble Road.

When the children were grown, or close to it, Mrs. Mobley and J.C. purchased a five-and-dime store by U.S. Highway 31 in downtown Cullman. She made it a huge success by customizing such items as flower arrangements and also offered very friendly service. People actually cried when the Mobleys sold the store. Mrs. Mobley responded to any needs around her, whether it was food for families with sickness, death or just somebody down on their luck.

She is the only person living that was a charter member of Brickyard Baptist Church in Cullman. Several of her ancestors were Methodist ministers. She was an active member of the historic Center Hill Methodist Church in Grandview. She taught adults in Sunday school for over 50 years.

Mrs. Mobley was vital to the community and farm groups. She designed Grandview displays, which won first place several times at the county fair. While her children were in school, she actively supported PTA and teachers. Her contributions were recognized in the 1990s, when she was named “Woman of the Year.”

After her husband passed away in the early 90s, I spoke to her about doing a column for The Cullman Tribune. She did a wonderful job with Grandview and Bethsadia news for over two decades.

She was also a great cook and enjoyed cooking lunch for people almost every day and cooking for family get-togethers. This outstanding lady canned and froze large quantities of fruits and vegetables. In recent years, before suffering a stroke, she and her son Sammy’s family shared a large garden.

Mrs. Mobley currently resides at the Folsom Center. To congratulate her, please send a card to the Folsom Center at 401 Arnold St., NE, Cullman, Alabama 35055. A reception was held on Sept. 25 at the Folsom Center in her honor, hosted by her family.

This remarkable woman has truly been a blessing to scores of people. It is a privilege to know and love her. She sure matches the virtuous woman in the Bible.