Helen Brooks, who recently celebrated her 104th birthday, says her biggest joy has been family, watching her children grow up.
Born on June 12, 1909 in Ennis, Texas, the same year that the NAACP was founded, Brooks earned her bachelor’s degree in Home Economics from Prairie View A&M University in 1930 and then moved to Oakland from Fort Worth, Texas in 1936. She married Clifford Brooks in 1939.
< p>The couple moved to Hayward in 1956 and converted a barn into a two-story home, where she still lives today. Aside from cataract surgery in each eye, Brooks has lived a healthy life, free of medication.
“I took care of my body when I was young,” she said, “and now my body is taking care of me.”
“Everything is working natural on its own,” Brooks said smiling, showing all of her own teeth. She was previously featured in The Post on her 101st birthday.
Her grandfather was 107 when he passed. Up to the time of his death, he never needed eyeglasses to read the daily newspaper.
She is the mother of three children: Frank Knight, Lily Brooks Toney, and Carl Brooks, who died in 1980. She also has four grandchildren and 10 great grandchildren. She says her goal is to live to be 110.