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Good For You | Nova Beall

100-year-old woman serves as family's 'health guru'

Mildred Fisher of Largo is an active woman. She golfs weekly, has a hole-in-one under her belt, and has overall scores lower than her age.

An impressive feat, since Mrs. Fisher recently turned 100 years old.

She celebrated her milestone birthday June 28 at Lakeview Largo Lakehouse at a party and private golf tournament with more than 150 friends and family in attendance.

Mrs. Fisher was born June 28, 1908, and raised in Chicago with her older brother, Leo. She finished high school at age 16 and graduated from the University of Illinois at 19 with majors in elementary education and history.

On a college double date she met Ralph Fisher, and the two were married in 1930.

The Fishers lived in northwestern Chicago and raised three sons, Don, Allan and Jim. When Mr. Fisher retired in 1972, the couple moved to Florida.

She enjoys serving as "health guru" for family members, providing the latest tips on nutrition and fitness.

Mrs. Fisher, who has five grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren, is a member of the League of Women Voters and drives voters who need assistance to the polls, has an e-mail account, enjoys attending the theater and playing bridge, volunteering her time in Largo, and shopping for ingredients for her chocolate chip cookies.

She maintains 20/20 vision, contributing to her hole-in-one at age 89.

Some of Mrs. Fisher's secrets to a long, healthy life include cutting out carbonated beverages after age 50 to maintain calcium levels, eating raw spinach, cooking and eating unpeeled potatoes, drinking red wine socially and taking a daily vitamin with breakfast.

• • •

When Lewis Laird was born in Downington, Pa., on July 28, 1905, his parents kept pigs, chickens and pigeons. The water pump was on the back porch. Indoor plumbing hadn't been installed yet.

Mr. Laird, a resident of Belleair Health Center, Clearwater, recently celebrated his 103rd birthday.

He graduated from Gettysburg College in 1929 and received a master's degree in education from the University of Pennsylvania.

He held teaching positions at Bordertown Military Academy in New Jersey and Downington High School before marrying Edna S. Martzel, also a teacher, in 1935.

The couple had a daughter.

From his next teaching position in Moorestown, N.J., Mr. Laird became director of Paradise Farms, a camp for disadvantaged children, in Philadelphia. He then worked more than 17 years as superintendent of schools in Garwood, N.J., and retired in 1970.

After moving to Largo in 1971, the couple became active members of Anona United Methodist Church where Mr. Laird joined the Sanctuary choir, then became a member of the Choraliers.

Three years after Mrs. Laird's passing in 1985, Mr. Laird married Ruby Dillard, and they have continued to be active church members.

The couple has traveled to Hawaii, the Canadian Rockies, Alaska, the Holy Land, Egypt, Australia, the Western Rockies and Nova Scotia.

Couple celebrates as 'not so newlyweds'

Dan and Jeanne Morrison of Largo celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary with a Golden Gala at the Ritz-Carlton of Sarasota hosted by their daughter, Michelle Harclerode. The family event included savory cuisine, the world premiere of Dan and Jeanne: A Love Story For All Time and a rousing version of the "Not So Newlywed Game."

The Morrisons were married June 21, 1958, at St. George Catholic Church, Westport, Mass. They've lived in Massachusetts, Washington, D.C., and France.

They came here in 1970 from Sudbury, Mass.

Mr. Morrison is a graduate of the University of Massachusetts. He worked several years for the Department of the Navy in Washington, D.C., and for Raytheon in both Massachusetts and Florida.

Mrs. Morrison worked as a legal secretary while in Massachusetts. After moving to Florida and raising a family, she worked for the International Academy of Tennis. Currently, she is employed as parish secretary for St. Patrick's Catholic Church, Largo.

The couple has a daughter who lives in Cape Coral, and three granddaughters.

The Morrisons are active members of St. Patrick's Catholic Church where they are both Eucharistic ministers.

To submit an item , write to Nova Beall, 710 Court Street, Clearwater, FL 33756. Fax to (727) 445-4119 or e-mail Good For You includes news of 50th wedding anniversaries, people celebrating their 100th birthday (or more) and young people's noteworthy achievements academically, in the arts or community service. For information or an anniversary form, call (727) 445-4221.

100-year-old woman serves as family's 'health guru' 08/05/08 [Last modified: Tuesday, August 5, 2008 7:32pm]
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