August 21:

August 21: National Senior Citizen’s Day

In 1988, National Senior Citizens Day was established by President Ronald Reagan.

“Throughout our history, older people have achieved much for our families, our communities, and our country. That remains true today, and gives us ample reason this year to reserve a special day in honor of the senior citizens who mean so much to our land,” Reagan said in Proclamation 5847.

The oldest verifiable person to ever live was Jeanne Calment, a French woman who was born on Feb. 21, 1875 and died on Aug. 4, 1997, making her lifespan an amazing 122 years. Calment credited her resiliency to wine, olive oil, and having a sense of humor.

Proving that you are never too old to go back to school, Nola Ochs, a Kansas woman, became the world’s oldest American to graduate from college at the age of 95 in 2007 (a 96-year-old Taiwan man broke the world’s record in 2009.) In 2010, Ochs, at 98, received her master’s degree in liberal studies, with a concentration on history, from Fort Hays State University in Kansas.

Min Bahadur Sherchan, a Nepalese man who climbed Mt. Everest at age 76, holds the Guinness World Record for being the oldest person to scale the world’s highest peak. He accomplished this amazing feat on his first attempt.

Gladys Burrill set the Guinness World Record for being the oldest woman to run a marathon when she finished the Honolulu Marathon on Dec. 12, 2010 at the age of 92 with a time of 9 hours, 53 minutes. Burrill, also known as the “Gladyator,” ran her very first marathon at the age of 86.

For information on activities scheduled at the Fairmont, Mannington and Fairview Senior Centers, visit

At what age do you consider a person a “senior citizen”?