Ellen “Kathryn” Powell-Prine will soon celebrate her 104th birthday.
The resident of Golden Age Nursing Home in Denham Springs was born Oct. 16, 1915, to Elisha Thomas Powell and Ellen Lorette Lane-Powell in Texarkana, Texas. She was raised in Cotton Valley. Her father was the town barber and her mother ran a boarding house for schoolteachers.
Her family says she was always adventurous. She loved fishing with her father and could outrun and outjump all the boys. She learned how to drive at age 12 in a Model T, family members said.
At age 13, she won a local tree sitting contest with a record of 99 hours and was known as the prettiest tomboy in town.
When Powell-Prine was 17, she graduated high school and went to business college in Texarkana, and then started her career working for a local judge.
At age 21, she met the love of her life, her husband Jack Holt. At the beginning of World War II, Holt enlisted in the U.S. Army Air Corps and was stationed at Topeka, Kansas.
They started a family after 10 years of marriage and had four children, Jack Jr., Karen, Sherry and Linda. Her husband died in 1967, leaving Powell-Prine a young widow.
Her family said she spent the following three summers camping in all western National Parks with her daughter Linda, who was 9. Their last trip was driving a Volkswagen Beetle to the end of the road in Alaska and camping in a pop-up camper.
In 1985, Kathryn married Lloyd Prine, of Walker, former owner of Prine Building Materials. After a wedding in Hawaii, the couple traveled the world, visiting London, Paris, Athens, Cairo, Rome, Hong Kong, Australia and New Zealand.
When Kathryn was 71, she and Prine hiked the Appalachian Trail from spring to fall for two years in a row, hiking over 1,000 miles. During the next 10 years, they lived in a travel trailer exploring the entire U.S.
Prine spent his final years at Golden Age Nursing Home, where Powell-Prine lives.