Florence Corkery has been a part of the South Shore community for over 60 years, during which time she co-owned the Buoy 4 Tavern in Blue Point.

Now the Bayport resident, a retired teacher from Pine Park Elementary School in Brentwood, just turned 100.

People all around the area, like Islip Town Councilwoman Mary Kate Mullen, came to celebrate the big party, during which Corkery was awarded a Citation of Recognition by Islip Town.

The Brooklyn native moved to Long Island in 1954, where she soon got her first job here in the mortgage department of Eastern Federal Bank on Main Street.

But at 45, Corkey, who held a business degree from St. John’s University, wanted to do something more.

“I wanted to work with young kids,” she told the Suffolk County News.

She then ventured off to Adelphi University, where she got her education degree. Soon after graduation, she was teaching second and third grade at Brentwood School District.

After retiring in 1983, she went back to her hometown to continue her work of serving the community.

Corkery went on to help establish the Bayport-Blue Point Chamber of Commerce and later co-owned a restaurant called the Buoy 4 Tavern, which today is JT’s Cafe in Blue Point.

“She was my business partner,” her son John Corkery told Suffolk County News. “Next thing you know, we had her behind the bar, where everyone called her “Mom.”

After the business sold years ago, she still hasn’t slowed down.

Corkery now dedicates her time to her three children, six grandchildren, and three great-grandchildren.

Top: Islip Town councilwoman Mary Kate Mullen with Florence Corkery. (courtesy)