106-year-old evangelist still hard at work

Otis G. Clark turned 106 this month. - Andy Hobbs/The Mirror
Otis G. Clark turned 106 this month.
— image credit: Andy Hobbs/The Mirror

Otis G. Clark turned 106 on Feb. 13, 2009, and still works as a traveling evangelist.

His secret to longevity?

"Get on God's side," said Clark, who lives in unincorporated King County near the Pierce County line.

Clark said the biggest moment in his life was when he converted to Christianity at age 25 while in a Los Angeles jail for selling bootleg whiskey during the Prohibition era. He had left Oklahoma after enduring the 1921 race riot in Tulsa, considered the worst race riot in U.S. history.

While in Los Angeles, Clark had the opportunity to work for movie stars Clark Gable, Joan Crawford and Charlie Chaplin. Clark and his wife lived in Joan Crawford's home. He was the butler and she was the cook.

Clark recently returned from his second mission trip to Africa. He made the first trip at age 103 and the second trip at age 104.

He still lives independently and has his own car ("I started out with old Model-T Fords — you had to crank them to start them"). He takes no medications and has all of his teeth, except for one. He has no restricted diet and only requires glasses when reading, according to his family.

In his lifetime, Clark said Lyndon B. Johnson was his favorite president because of various civil rights legislation that made life better for African Americans.

Did he ever expect to see an African American president like Barack Obama?

"That wasn't in our little mind. We didn't think that way at all," Clark said.

To learn more about Otis Clark, visit

We encourage an open exchange of ideas on this story's topic, but we ask you to follow our guidelines for respecting community standards. Personal attacks, inappropriate language, and off-topic comments may be removed, and comment privileges revoked, per our Terms of Use. Please see our FAQ if you have questions or concerns about using Facebook to comment.
blog comments powered by Disqus

Read the Oct 21
Green Edition

Browse the print edition page by page, including stories and ads.

Browse the archives.

Friends to Follow

View All Updates