Ellen came to Putnam County with husband Charles Purcell in 1937. She has given her time and talents to the community for many years. Older folks in Putnam County know her for her market of homemade chicken and noodles and baked goods on the edge of the DePauw University campus. She was a 4-H leader and member of Town and Country Home Economics Club for more than 50 years.
Some people will know her as the Farm Bureau Women's Leader from the 1950s or as the county president and district president of the Federation of Women's Clubs. She was Worthy Matron of Eastern Star and a member for more than 75 years, as well as Guardian of Job's Daughters.
Roachdale Christian Church members remember her as one of their favorite Sunday school teachers, director of the senior high youth group and particularly as the founder and director of the children's choir for more than 25 years.
Nearly all of her family attended her birthday part and reunion at the end of June, including brother Thomas Graeme Strawn of Greenwood; sister Norma Gene Rambow of Battle Creek, Mich.; her three daughters, Roberta Rarick and husband Maurice of Clarinda, Iowa, Charla Barnard and husband Thomas of Gloucester, Va., and Glenda Lindquist and husband Jeffrey of Sandusky, Ohio; eight grandchildren; 14 great-grandchildren; stepbrother Bud Grindol of St. Charles, La.; nieces from California, Michigan and Indiana; and cherished friends.
When asked her greatest accomplishment outside of having a wonderful family, she responded, "I'm thankful to have been able to design and sew over 100 quilt tops since turning 90 years old and sharing them all with family and friends."
Everyone is invited to join in a "Birthday Card Shower" to honor Ellen's 100th birthday, July 18. Cards should be addressed to Ellen Purcell, 2086 East SR 236, Roachdale, IN 46172.