Victor Fulton was one of seven children, raised on a farm near South Bend Township. At six-years-old, his father asked him to stay at the house and help his mother.
“So my mother taught me everything about cooking, bread making and sausage making ,” he remembers.
He continued to help in the home as he attended a one-room school house.
“That’s an experience I think everyone should have,” he said. “You not only go to one grade, but you go to all eight grades every year. There is no way you can’t learn.”
After his schooling was complete, he went into the Army. Victor recalled working in the kitchen during the night meals for the military police. He was a hit with the other personnel who enjoyed his homemade breads freshly prepared for them.
After his military service, he came back to work at U.S. Steel, which he described as hard and hot work.
“I worked in a blast furnace. I was a keeper of the furnace – taking care of all the maintenance work that had to be done to get the furnace ready for tapping, where you took the hot metal off the furnace. The hot metal was kept at a minimum temperature of about 2,700 degrees. We took 350 tons of hot metal from the furnace nine times a day.”
Although married and working full time, Victor still enjoyed helping his wife in the kitchen. After his wife passed away, he looked for something to do in his community. That is when he began applying his talent at the Apollo Senior Center.
“My wife passed away five years ago. The (senior) center has really been a blessing to me to come here and enjoy and mingle with the people and do the cooking, It gives me something to do other than sitting at home looking at four walls.”
Victor said he goes out of his way to make the meals a pleasant experience.
“Everybody that comes in, I know them all and I know what they like and what they don’t like,” Victor said with a twinkle in his eye. “We have special little treats here once in awhile that I do on my own. We have one lady that comes in and she doesn’t like carrots. But I do special things. I butter her carrots and put brown sugar on them. That’s called ‘making points!'”
Now 87 years young, Victor still doesn’t miss a step following his legendary recipes.
“I make my own bread, and have done so for years for the family. I don’t do it as much today. But when they have a bake sale here, I bake something – pie, or two loaves of bread, dinner roles, or something like that.”
For more information on any of the 12 senior centers throughout Armstrong County, contact the Area Agency on Aging at 724-548-3290.