Feature: Mother’s work created day for grandparents

September signals the end of summer and the beginning of autumn. And on the first Sunday after Labor Day, it marks National Grandparents Day.

The creation of this day was the inspiration of Marian Lucille Herndon McQuade, a homemaker and mother of 15 from West Virginia. She began an exhaustive lobbying campaign for the day in 1970. Her efforts paid off in September 1978, when the White House called to inform her that President Jimmy Carter had signed a proclamation designating the first Sunday after Labor Day to be National Grandparents Day. The proclamation also had unanimous Congressional approval, and it was observed for the first time in 1979.

There’s even an official flower for the day: the forget­-me-not. It serves as a poignant reminder that the time to nurture relationships with grandparents is limited.

Today, millions of people throughout the nation celebrate the day. According to Hallmark, about 3 million grandparents receive Grandparents Day cards each year.