Celebrating our centenarian residents as they share wisdom about aging
Four Wichita Presbyterian Manor residents share the distinction of having lived more than 100 years: Margie Andrews, Lucion Doshier, Ruth Lichty and Marcia Opp. We asked each centenarian a little about their lives, the history they’ve witnessed, and their secrets to long life.
Margie Andrews, health care
Margie’s advice for aging well is, “Do what you want and take care of yourself.”
The Chester, Oklahoma, native worked at Cessna and raised two daughters before her retirement. She most fondly remembers the 1940s, the decade she married her husband, with whom she had the “best time” traveling around the world during World War II.
She considers television and cars two of the most important technological advances of the past century. Though she loved to drive, Margie didn’t learn how until she was in her 30s. It simply wasn’t that common for women to drive back then — one of the many ways the world has changed in the past century.
Margie credits some of her longevity to her ability to cheer herself up when she’s down.
“When you’re sad, sing a happy tune,” she advises.
Over the course of her life, Margie has enjoyed spending time with her four grandchildren and five great-grandchildren, fishing at the lake with her husband, crafts such as sewing and crocheting, and watching movies. She also served as a deacon at her church.
Margie’s words of wisdom: “Don’t think bad or talk bad about someone, because you don’t know what they are going through.”
Luchion Doshier, independent living
Luchion has common sense advice for those who aspire to a long life: “Don’t smoke, don’t do drugs, be nice to other people, and have good partner to spend your life with.”
However, he admits that longevity may simply be in his genes.
“I guess I inherited it, I don’t know,” he said. “My dad lived to be 101 years old.”
Luchion, who is originally from Yellville, Arkansas, worked at Beechcraft, served in the military, and worked at Thomas Hydraulics before founding his own aircraft machine shop in 1950. He ran the business for 24 years.
The father of two has six grandchildren. He has great-grandchildren, too, but jokes that he stopped counting when he got to the third generation.
The 1940s and ’50s were Luchion’s favorite decades. He regards traveling to the moon, which the U.S. achieved in 1969, as the most important technological advance of his lifetime.
Throughout his life, Luchion enjoyed seeing the world.
“I traveled to Western and Eastern Canada, all over the United States and spent my time in the service in Japan and the Philippines,” he said.
Ruth Lichty, assisted living
Thinking positive has been key to Ruth’s long life, she says, and she believes staying active is the best way to age well. For her part, the Beatrice, Nebraska native enjoyed bowling and playing golf.
Ruth had three children, six grandchildren, 12 great-grandchildren, and one great-great grandson.
She looks back fondly on the 1940s, the decade she graduated and got married.
“I am proud of the fact I was married almost 70 years,” Ruth said. “We were two weeks shy.”
Ruth is amazed by the advances in technology she has seen throughout her life.
Marcia Opp, health care
“I can’t believe I’ve lived this long,” Marcia Opp said.
She’s not sure she has advice about longevity, either.
“I don’t really think about it,” she said. “I just keep having birthdays.”
It helps that she hasn’t had many big problems. When she does, Marcia has a convenient scapegoat in mind.
“I always blame the weather,” she said. “If my legs don’t work right, I blame it on the weather.”
Martha, who is originally from Michigan, also lived for some time in Tennessee, where they moved for her husband’s job. She enjoyed needlework throughout her life.
Though she went to work later, she was able to focus on raising her children when they were young.
“I stayed home to raise my two daughters, because I thought that was important,” she said. “I was fortunate that I could do that, as my husband had a good job.”
Marcia also notes that she doesn’t like to dwell in the past. Instead, she focuses on the future.