They say age is but a state of mind, and here’s further proof to back that statement. Here is the story of Joe Newman, a Florida resident who still drives around, hair to the wind, in his shiny Mercedes-Benz SLK 320. Did we mention he is currently 107 years of age?
107 years takes us back a long ways in time, let’s be clear. Joe Newman was born just one year after the sinking of the Titanic in 1912. Of course, he lived through the two world wars, 1914-1918 and 1939-1945. As he turned 40, he also witnessed the arrival of Mercedes-Benz in North America.
At 101, when most of the rest of us mere mortals have been saying goodbye for a long time, he was entering politics.
And what's the secret to his longevity? Keeping busy both physically and mentally, says the centenarian. Apparently, owning a convertible doesn't seem to do any harm either. Having a younger spouse might also play a role; his wife will celebrate her 100th birthday later this year.
Beyond the incredible fact that Joe Newman still drives at 107, there is the very relevant question of age and driving, and it must be asked. After all, we don't have the same reflexes after a certain age. Maybe they come back when you pass the century mark?
Joe Newman himself says that that is so. That said, he believes older drivers should be tested regularly to make sure they are capable of driving. As for his current driver's licence, it is valid until 2022.
Coincidentally, I’ll be flying to Florida tomorrow to visit a friend. You can be sure that if I see a red Mercedes-Benz SLK speeding away (or idling on the highway), I'll take a good look at it.
One of the most amazing things about a story like this is that it gives us all hope. It makes us realize that life doesn't end at 60, 70 or 80. Barring illness or accident, it ends when we decide it is no longer worth living.
Thank you, Joe Newman.