You’re never too old to tell Santa Claus your Christmas wishes, at least that’s what 91-year-old Beatrice Mazoch Yockey believes. She, along with her caregiver, Georgia Mican, visited with the jolly old elf on Thursday, Dec. 10 at United Ag.
“She asked him for a kiss and he told her that when she comes back at 92 (years of age), she will get that kiss,” Mican said.
Born in 1929, Yockey has lived her entire life in El Campo and recalls why Christmas is so special to her.
Her favorite memory as a child was “decorating the tree with my brothers and sisters,” she said.
When asked ‘why is it important to celebrate Christmas?’, Yockey said, “It’s the birth of Jesus.”
For Christmas, she received candy and fruit from Santa Claus, and her daughter, Sharon Martinez, says her mom most likely received gifts from her parents.
Yockey’s parents, John and Mary Mazoch, lived on Adams School Road and had three daughters and three sons. John, according to Martinez, was known as “Windmill John” because “he worked on windmills in the county.”
Adams School Road is located on the west side of town off of West Norris.
As a child, Yockey remembers her mother and her sisters stirring up sweets in the kitchen.
“We made molasses candy and sugar cookies, but my favorite was popcorn balls,” Yockey said.
After marrying, she continued some of those traditions with her own family.
Together, she and Bill Yockey had four children, Danny, who is deceased, and three daughters, Renee Boutelle and Sharon Martinez of El Campo and Roxane Roach of Katy.
Growing up, Martinez said they spent Christmas Eve at home with just their immediate family and on Christmas day, it was spent with uncles and aunts and their families at her paternal grandparents’ home. The Christmas Eve meal was always shrimp and was affordable because Yockey’s brother was a shrimper in Palacios. On Christmas day the feast centered around a traditional baked turkey.
Martinez says she still makes sugar cookies using the family recipe her mom passed down from her mom. She also makes peanut brittle, which she believes is very similar to the molasses candy that was one of her mom’s favorites as a child.
This year, Yockey will spend Christmas Eve with Martinez and her family, and on Christmas day she will be at the home of one of her other children.