Elderly Midland residents watch solar eclipse for the first time - KWES NewsWest 9 / Midland, Odessa, Big Spring, TX: newswest9.com |

Elderly Midland residents watch solar eclipse for the first time

Elizabeth Howard watches the total solar eclipse through telescope (Source: KWES). Elizabeth Howard watches the total solar eclipse through telescope (Source: KWES).
MIDLAND, TX (KWES) -

Dozens of elderly Manor Park residents gazed at the sky on Monday. For all, it was their first time seeing a total eclipse. Many say they didn't have access to the technology that we have available today to view it back then.

The anticipation built up all morning.

"I've never seen one before," said resident Gail Collins.

"I'm excited. I'm very excited," said resident Vera Zachary.

Manor Park residents were alive during the last total eclipse in the 70's, but many didn't get a chance to see it.

"Many of these people had never even looked through a telescope before," said Daryl Lane, member of West Texas Astronomers and Manor Park resident. "They say when you see one, you never forget it."

Resident after resident lined up to glance up at the sky.

"Oh, just a lifetime experience!" said Elizabeth "Snookie" Howard.

Howard, 96, has never seen a total eclipse.

"It's just totally unreal," said Gracie Shaw, 92. She last saw a partial eclipse around the age of 7.

Whether they looked through the telescope, their solar glasses, or pinhole projector, the day was filled with excitement.

"Your perspective on experience in life, enlarges and people get excited at something that they've never seen before," said Lane.

For many who came to the party, it was a second chance for them to experience something they missed out on the first time.

"I'm thrilled that I got to see it," said one resident.

"It's something that happens so rarely and it's God's creation up there," said Zachary.

"I'll never live for another one. I'm 96, so you know it will be a long time before we have another partial even," said Howard.

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