We asked local baby boomers: Would you like to live to be 100? If so, under what conditions? What do you think the United States will look like for centenarians when boomers reach that age?
Here are some of their answers.
An economist at a recent Greater Akron Chamber event said that the person who will live to 130 was born this year (as was my grandson).
My great-grandmother lived to 100 and the ABJ noted it in an article about her birthday party. This was in the early ’50s when I was just a toddler, so I don’t know what her quality of life was like.
With the federal court ruling opening the door to employers unilaterally cutting pensions and retiree benefits, proposals to cut Social Security and Medicare, employers opting out of funding retirement plans and at the same time reducing employee pay so that it is difficult to save for retirement on your own, living to 100 would be a financial challenge.
Psychologically, outliving friends and many family members might be hard to deal with, but having a new grandson has demonstrated to me that younger entrants to the family can give you more purpose. I think also that if you are still able to serve others and get outside yourself, old age just becomes a number.
Whether living that long is something I would choose isn’t relevant to a person of faith. I expect to be called home on God’s timetable, not mine.
James A. Kroeger
Yes, I would like to live that long. My maternal grandmother lived to be 92 and the stories of all she witnessed in her life was amazing. I can’t wait to see all that awaits me in the next 40 years.
I’d like to see more physical fitness venues for us as we age. Health and wellness tailored more to my style of living would be nice ... fitness trails and hiking trails with extra added safety rails, for example. Keeping outdoor living more accessible.
I would love to live to 100 years old. I want to see my grandchildren become adults with their own families. I want to enjoy my family for as long as possible. I would want to be of sound mind and have my husband with me.
Quality of life plays large into this question. I would enjoy being around for my granddaughters for as many years as God will allow. Their generation needs to hear a voice of reason beyond what they are bombarded with in society today; conscience requires education and we should not leave that responsibility to others. If boomers desire to be significant in their families’ lives, they need to be more than Santa Claus.
In response to the second question: Return to neighborhood living. Being able to walk to the store or to dinner. Front porches where neighbors gather. Friendly places where one can peacefully grow old with dignity and independence. Suburban living is all about hiding; in your home, in your backyard or in your automobile. When neighbors know each other they care about one another.
Thirty-four years from now [when he turns 100], I would like to see the U.S. with term limits for all Congress members. States and towns need absolute power over their local needs without federal interference.
I would also like to see Social Security still available to all seniors who have contributed to their account.
The only reason for me to want to live to be 100 years old is if I can still be active as I am now, at age 63. I always tell the “kids” that I can still do those things that I did when I was younger; it just hurts more.
Joseph Cassiday Jr.,