95 Year Old Entrant In East Texas State Fair

The start of the East Texas State Fair means judging is already underway for all kinds of crafts, from doll houses to canning, to quilts.  And its competition brings some special entries. 95 year old Charles McCollum began needle work when he was 9 years old, making winter gloves for troops during the first world war. And over the years he's won dozens of blue ribbons at the fair.  But he keeps coming back for one final prize, a tri-colored ribbon meaning the "best of the best."

The retired railroad worker has produced more than 250 needle creations and devotes time daily to new works.  He says needlework is keeping him young in more ways than one.

"I drive my own car. I just had a date with a 100 year old woman, went to church together. It kind of created a little excitement, two old people," says McCollum.

He won't sell his work, saying that it would take away from what he really likes about it.

"It's my therapy. I get more enjoyment out of doing it and giving it to people," McCollum says.

His artwork sends a simple message that he hopes everyone will hear. "Give rather than trying to receive," he says.

The winners of the judging will be announced tomorrow.

Bob Hallmark reporting.