Community celebrates the life of author John Updike on his 90th birthday | Berks Regional News

SHILLINGTON, Pa.- A special event was held Friday at John Updike’s childhood home to celebrate what would have been the author’s 90th birthdayand birthday.

“We decided that this 1st anniversary after our grand opening was so important and monumental that we should celebrate it,” said Maria Lester, Director of Education for John Updike’s Childhood Home.

So community members, educators and even a very special person in John Updike’s life came to read 90 minutes of his poetry and prose.

Jacqueline Kendall met John Updike in 5and to note. She was his first childhood crush and recipient of several worship poems.

“He did that in class,” Kendall said, holding up a copy of a paper he had drawn and written. “He just doodled that quickly and why I saved him, I have no idea, because at that time, when I was a kid, I had no idea this man was going to make it. “

However, at only ten years old, his affinity for words was evident.

“To someone I can adore, Jackie, the fragrant beauty of violets, laden with morning dew next to your beauty seems damn desperate,” reads Kendall of Updike’s 5and grade writings.

Lester says there was no better way to honor him on this milestone heavenly birthday than by making sure his literary works live on where he spent his youth.

“It’s my mission to get Updike into the hands of the students of Berks County,” says Lester.

Lola R. McClure