Willie Pearl Porter is 101 years old — born Oct. 5, 1911 — and is arguably the oldest Dolphins fan in town.
“I’m 101,” she said, “and I don’t have Alzheimer’s. I’m 20 years old from the head to the waist but from the waist on down I’m 100.”
She has been a season-ticket holder since the days the team played in the Orange Bowl. She has known players and coaches across the generations, which is why she has a jersey signed from Don Shula and a football from Jason Taylor.
So when Miami Dolphin safety Reshad Jones heard about Mrs. Porter, he wanted to meet her, extending her 46-year connection with the franchise to a player on today’s team.
“Today is my day off but when I heard you are one of the oldest living Dolphins fans, I wanted to come out here and meet you,” Jones tells Mrs. Porter as the two sit in the family room of the Liberty City house where she has lived since 1964.
“I said, I’m a bigger fan of hers than she is of the Dolphins. It’s bigger for me to meet her than her to meet me.”
The fact that Jones is giving up his day off is some statement Sometimes he wakes up at 2 or 3 in the afternoon because sleep is precious during football season and Tuesday is the day to catch up. Sometimes he’ll get a massage to help his body heal or maybe “just chill” to rest his mind.
The rest of the week is regimented and packed with pressure. NFL players guard their day off like linemen protect their quarterbacks.
But this Tuesday was neither a day to sleep nor chill. Jones wanted to drive from his home in Plantation to Miami to visit with his new friend.
Mrs. Porter and her family are thrilled to meet Jones. He’s not only one of the team’s most productive players, but he also has a chance to be a Pro Bowl selection.
Family members — including daughter Laurestine and son Albert — are wearing Dolphins jerseys when Jones arrives.
“We’ve been Dolphins ever since we put our foot on the soil down here,” Mrs. Porter said. “We will always be Dolphins. And people be saying, ‘Them old Dolphins?’ We say, ‘Yeah, them old Dolphins!’ They ask if we are going to watch their games and I say, ‘Yeah, I sure am going to look at the game!’”
Jones knows Mrs. Porter is a big fan. But her love for the team is something like parents’ love of their children. She loves them all, but she has her favorites.
“I love Ricky Williams,” she said. “I say, ‘Run Ricky, run!’ He and Jason Taylor are the two I really love.”
She used to include Brandon Marshall and Reggie Bush in that esteemed club, but that changed this year.
“She found out Bush and his girlfriend are expecting a baby and she didn’t like Bush anymore,” Laurestine Porter said. “She was like, ‘You can’t have no baby without marrying that lady.’ ”
Marshall was traded to the Chicago Bears in the spring.
“I still like him,” Mrs. Porter said. “I love me my Dolphins. I’m going to be a Dolphin until I close these eyes and go through the pearly gates.”
Jones is 6-2 and 210 pounds of chiseled muscle. He doesn’t need nutritional advice or workout tips. But he can learn something from Mrs. Porter about longevity.