Palm Coast’s Blanche London turns 100

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BY JEROLINE MCCARTHY
DAYTONA TIMES

Wearing her crown, Mrs. London is honored on her 100th birthday.
PHOTOS COURTESY OF MARVA JONES

When Palm Coast resident Blanche London’s 100th birthday arrived on Dec. 26, she was celebrated in  a drive-by salute from her many friends and family.

With daughter Marva Jones, a former Flagler County educator, at her side, Mrs. London warmly smiled and waved at those who delivered her gifts, distant kisses and plenty of birthday greetings.

It was a delightful event for the retired singer and pianist who loves to laugh and is considered a jokester.

She still plays the piano, loves people and credits her long life to being blessed by God.

The centenarian was born Dec. 26, 1920, in Cleveland, Ohio, the only survivor out of five siblings.

Featured in 1947 video

Mrs. Blanche London of Palm Coast was celebrated in a drive by birthday party on Dec. 26. She is shown with her daughter, Marva Jones; her grandson, James McMillan, a hip-hop attorney.

Mrs. London, along with her late husband, Sim London, performed for years as Mr. and Mrs. 88 Keys.

One of the first videos ever made features the Londons on YouTube in a 1947 video titled, “Mr. and Mrs. 88 Keys Still Rocking.”

She is a longtime member of Palm Coast United Methodist Church, where the pastor is the Rev. Dr. Kevin James.

“She is looking forward to playing the piano again when she can get to the church,” said Jones.

2019 setback

Mrs. London showed her resilience in 2019 after she fell and broke her hip.

Even though she now uses a walker, Mrs. London had to learn to walk again and perform basic tasks like showering and dressing herself.

She has been presented a proclamation by Palm Coast Mayor Milissa Holland as one of the city’s finest citizens.

In addition to her daughter, Mrs. London has four grandchildren. Her son, Doby London, has since passed away.

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