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Legacy List Items Help Ease Anxiety Of Moving From A Home Of Over 50 Years

Retired schoolteacher Shirley Macon of Aberdeen, New Jersey is downsizing and moving to Atlanta, Georgia to be closer to her daughters. She’s lived in her current house for over fifty years and the transition is going to be an emotional one. Her home is filled with pictures, plaques, artwork and memorabilia that celebrate not only her family but African American culture which is very important to her. She can’t take everything with her and that’s a cause of great anxiety.

Watch Legacy List at 9:00 p.m. Mondays on VPM PBS. Find your local VPM channels here.

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Among Shirley’s most cherished items are a collection of African instruments, an old perfume bottle of her deceased sister and the cherished family bible. Matt and his team turn the garage upside down and search the attic looking for these missing Legacy List items. Matt even snakes his way through the crawl space and comes across something Shirley hasn’t seen in years.

Matt goes to a local library to find out more about Shirley and her family who moved to New Jersey from Selma, Alabama. Her relatives marched with Dr. King and were deeply involved in the Civil Rights movement. Shirley has several mementos from that era she wants to take with her.

Things get emotional when Shirley and her daughter Wanda see the house empty for the first time. “My life has disappeared,” she says fighting back the tears but Matt convinces her downsizing is the right thing to do. Shirley is in for another surprise when Matt reveals information about her family history she’s never heard before.

With everything packed away, Matt sits down with Shirley and Wanda and goes over the Legacy List. He’s found everything including Wanda’s Cabbage Patch Kids which she hasn’t seen in thirty years. Finally, Matt takes Shirley out to the back patio where friends and family have gathered to say good-bye.