Ethan Shelton, 110, appears on Today Show

Published 2:50 pm Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Ethan Shelton was featured on a Today Show segment Tuesday morning. Submitted photo

Ethan Shelton was featured on a Today Show segment Tuesday morning. Submitted photo

Ethan Shelton got a late birthday present Tuesday.

The Shelton’s Farm Market founder, who turned 110 years old July 10, was featured on the Willard Scott Birthdays segment on the Today Show Tuesday morning.

Ethan said Tuesday afternoon he wasn’t able to see the segment when it originally aired, but he is certain someone recorded it for him.

“It’s pretty neat,” he said.

During the segment, which recognizes people over the age of 100, Ethan’s picture appeared on a Smucker’s jar next to his name, hometown and age.

Willard Scott had this to say about Ethan: “[Ethan] taught himself to play the fiddle when he was 108. He can do “Fire on the Mountain” in stereo. Happy birthday to you.”

Nick Shelton, Ethan’s great-grandson, said Ethan is one of about 60 verified supercentenarians (110 years old) alive today. Only five of those, he said, are male.

“I was pretty excited about it and excited for my [great] grandpa,” Nick said. “I think it’s neat he can be recognized for his longevity.

“He is great person to look up to and an inspiration for a lot of people.”

Joe Shelton, Ethan’s youngest son, said Ethan was scheduled to appear on the Today Show Aug. 13, but the segment didn’t air.

“It’s been a kind of a mystery since then. Even the local station promoted last week that he was going to be on,” Joe said. “But it’s national news, so there’s a lot of things that can push a segment like that aside.”

Joe was surprised, but happy, to see it air Tuesday.

“We’ve had people setting their DVRs all last week to no avail and then today there it was,” he said. “It was great to see him recognized like that.”

Ethan’s family campaigned to get Ethan on the Today Show using social media. A single Facebook post asking people to help get Ethan on the Today Show was viewed more than 47,000 times, liked 2,500 times and shared 1,100 times.

“We want to thank everybody that helped make it happen and we are all very appreciative of your support,” said Nick. “We’ve received a lot of great comments and really great people talking about the impact Ethan’s had on them.”