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Left to right are Teowonna Clifton, Charlotte Grissett, Tanya Slavin, Alfredia Livingston, Gwen Ford, Catherlene Ford, Sheena Vaught, Margaret Vaught, Agnes Edge, Myrtle Livingston and Angel Strickland.

Graduating 20 years apart, mothers and daughters celebrate a unique bond

Eleven graduates from North Myrtle Beach High School gathered for a special reunion on Aug. 24, 2019. The occasion was to celebrate the seven 1971 North Myrtle Beach High School graduates and their daughters, who graduated together in 1991.

“When I was in high school, I recognized that the mothers of two of my classmates graduated with my mother,” said Teowonna Clifton, organizer of the gathering. “I thought that was a wonderful coincidence that bonded us.”

Years later, Clifton decided to host a luncheon to bring together the mothers who were classmates and their daughters who were also classmates. “But when I got started planning, I realized that there were four other sets of mothers and daughters just like us. Now that was exciting!”

The gathering took place at Joe’s Bar and Grill in North Myrtle Beach and consisted of a gift exchange, sharing of high school memories and a candle lighting ceremony for the two who are now deceased. The group even broke into song, spontaneously singing the school’s alma mater, which was co-written by Myrtle Livingston, one of the 1971 graduates. Other restaurant patrons applauded.

The North Myrtle Beach High School Class of 1971 was the first class to graduate from the newly integrated school. It brought together the white students from Wampee High School and the black students from Chestnut High School.

The 1971 graduates are Alfredia Cox Livingston, Charlotte Cox Grissett, Sandra Edge, Edna Livingston Edge (deceased), Myrtle Strickland Livingston, Catherlene Willard Ford and Margaret Vereen Vaught. Their daughters, 1991 graduates, are Tanya Livingston Slavin, Teowonna Cox Clifton, Clarissa Edge, Agnes Edge, Angel Strickland, Gwen Ford and Donica Vaught (deceased).

The group plans to make the “Mother & Daughter Day of Friendship” an annual event. Next year, another mother and daughter pair will host the event. Clifton said the event is open to other mothers and daughters who graduated in 1971 and 1991. “That would make the event even more special.”

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