The Johnson and Sease family poses with Alton Mayor David Goins.ALTON - A local family garnered attention as they celebrated their 55th family reunion this past weekend. August 4, 2023, was named Johnson and Sease Family Day in the City of Alton.

The Johnson and Sease family reunion draws nearly 200 people every year. This year, family members traveled to Alton from Atlanta, Indianapolis, Memphis and Gary, Indiana. The reunion included a picnic and banquet, but before festivities began, the family lined the steps of City Hall to accept a proclamation from Mayor David Goins.

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“People find it interesting because we’ve been doing it for so long,” Brian Johnson, an Alton family member, said. “It really is something. My dad’s father had, like, nine brothers and sisters. And we are actually in touch with each one of those families.”

This is why the reunion is so important to Brian: He gets to know the people who made him who he is and meet the younger family members who will carry on that legacy.

All of the kids in the family posed for a picture with Mayor David Goins. Meanwhile, Brian pointed out his cousin Rufus, who is over 90 years old.

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“He gets around like he’s about 40. He’s still calling the shots like he’s about 30,” Brian joked.

The reunion continued through the weekend. At Saturday’s banquet, the family voted for officers to organize the reunion in the upcoming year. They also awarded a scholarship to a young family member who plans to pursue higher education.

The location for next year’s reunion has not yet been determined, but Alton was happy to host the family this weekend and celebrate their 55 years of history.

“It’s really something to have my grandfather’s sister’s great-granddaughter sitting at the table with me,” Brian added. “It amazes me, really, when you stop and really think about it.”

Mayor David Goins presents the family with a proclamation.

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