Sunday, January 15, 2006

late great achievers

Elderly people can still make a contribution later in life. Continuing progress is being made in fighting cancer, heart disease, stroke, and other killers. A person watching his or her diet and exercise may live to the biological limit of 120 years.
Herein proof that life begins - or at least continues after 70:
1. Konrad Adenauer (1876-1967) - Seventy-three when he became the first chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany. Resigned 14 years later.
2. Pope John XXIII (1881-1963) - Chosen Pope at 77, brought the Catholic Church into the 20th century.
3. Jomo Kenyatta (1894-1978) - Elected Kenya's first president at age 77. Led the country for 14 years.
4. Henri Matisse (1869-1954) - In his seventies did a series of paper cutouts that are exhibited at New York's Museum of Modern Art.
5. Golda Meir (1898-1978) - Named prime minister of Israel at 71; held the job for five years.
6. Pablo Picasso (1881-1973 ) - Completed his portraits of "Sylvette" at 73, married for the second time at 77, then executed three series of drawings between 85 and 90.
7. Anna Mary Robertson Moses (1860-1961) - Seventy-six when she took up painting as a hobby; as Grandma Moses she won international fame and staged 15 one-woman shows throughout Europe.
8. Arthur Rubinstein (1887-1982) - At age eighty-nine gave one of his greatest performances at New York's Carnegie Hall.
9. Sophocles (496-406 B.C.) - After the age of 70 wrote Electra and Oedipus at Colonus; held office in Athens at age 83.
10. Guiseppi Verdi (1813-1901 ) - At age 74 wrote Otello and at age 78 wrote Falstaff.
11. Frank Lloyd Wright, (1869-1959) - Completed New York's Guggenheim Museum at age 89; continued teaching until his death.
12. Adolph Zukon (1873-1976) - At age 91, chairman of Paramount Pictures.
Coniff, R. "Living Longer," in Aging, Goldstein, E. C., ed. Vol. 2, Art. 8. Boca Raton, FL.: Social Issues Resource Series, Inc., 1981.


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