Someone Cares: Birthday Man

His birthday calls helps him stay connected and the church community always looks forward to his voice.

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An illustration of an elderly man singing the "Happy Birthday" song to others over the phone.

On my way out of church one Sunday back in 2001, I saw a list of my fellow congregants’ birthdays on the bulletin board and picked up a copy. You love to sing, I thought. I’d even sung the jingle for a radio station at one point. You could sing “Happy Birthday” to these people.

The next day, I got out the church directory and made the first call. It was a hit! I kept going and usually got at least one enthusiastic thank-you when I went to services. I even heard that people who missed the call would gather their family to listen to the song on their voice mail.

Now that physical limitations keep me home, the calls help me stay connected with my church family. The church secretary prints out the list for me. In almost 18 years, I’ve had only five days with no one to sing for.

I turned 99 this year, and as long as my voice holds up, I’ll remain Westminster Presbyterian’s Birthday Man. I’ve already made nearly 36,000 calls. Hopefully I’ll get to make many more.

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