NEVADA, Iowa — Centenarian and Iowa native Dorothy Pointer recently attended her 85th class reunion in Colo, Iowa. At 102-years-old, she was the oldest attendee, but her climbing age doesn’t stop her from living a life of joy and independence.
“I’m the only one left,” said Pointer. “Well, I was probably the oldest one there that night. They didn’t ask, but I’m sure I was.”
Although the reunions are lonely, Dorothy’s life is unbelievably full.
“I used to do volunteer work for years over here at long-term care. I called them elderly people that was in long-term care, now I don’t say that,” Pointer said with a laugh.
She volunteered until she was 98-years-old, but a health scare landed her in the hospital.
“I had a stroke, and I came out of that real good, only my memory fails me lots of times. Everything kind of gets weaker, and I try to keep active,” said Pointer.
Trying is an understatement. Dorothy exemplifies an active lifestyle — driving herself over 20 miles to church, visiting her grandchildren’s homes scattered across the metro, going to the grocery store, pharmacy, bank and library — all on a weekly basis.
“If I feel like doing anything I just go ahead and do it,” said Pointer, explaining the motto she lives by.
Occupying her time with cooking a weekly dinner for her family, baking her legendary homemade pies from scratch, filling the pages of her diary each night, and even making a habit of completing home workouts. However, her favorite pastime of all — firing up the mower and walking it diagonally through the lawn herself, taking pride in a nearly flawless lawn.
“I can mow, as long as I feel like mowing,” Pointer said.
Her most recent purchase — a weedwhacker. Pointer’s independence is an inspiration, but there are a few things the centenarian prefers not to handle. Jim and Mary Pappas, Pointer’s next door neighbors of 36 years, are more than just the couple next door, they’re family.
“Our grandma away from grandmas, and she’s pretty special to us, all the way along and we help her out when we can,” said Jim Pappas.
“She always treated our kids like her own kids and our grandkids like her grandkids,” Mary Pappas added.
Dorothy even fills the walls of her home with drawn pictures of the Pappas’ grandchildren’s artwork.
Over 100 years of life and counting. A beloved mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, volunteer, survivor, and friend — now left with just one goal.
“I just want to live long enough to see my grandchildren achieve something,” Pointer said.
With a little good luck and lots of time with her friends and family, Dorothy lives to write another chapter in her story of life.