102-year-old inspires Jackson County residents to vote

Posted at 8:23 AM, Oct 30, 2018
and last updated 2018-10-30 10:23:39-04

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    JACKSON COUNTY, N.C. (WLOS) — Voting is a well-known right in America, but not everyone exercises it. If you need inspiration, meet Marie Smith, of Jackson County. She voted Monday at 102 years of age. She walked under her own power into Sylva’s one-stop location to cast her ballot.

“I always vote,” she said. “That’s what keeps our nation strong.”

Born in 1916, Smith has taken every opportunity to head to the polls, and this highly-charged midterm is no exception.

“I think we need some change. I think this is going to bring them out,” Smith said.

Longtime friend Wanda Jones said young people should find motivation watching Smith.

“So, I think they need to get on board if they want a voice in the government today,” Jones said.

Smith hopes her example influences others to cast ballots, a lesson she may have imparted to her students while teaching in Jackson County for many years.

“Get out and vote,” she said.

Jackson County Elections Board Director Lisa Lovedahl said two voters more than 100 years of age recently cast ballots, setting a positive influence. She said turnout so far in Jackson County is higher than past midterms.

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