Meet Garfield County’s ‘Super Seniors’ – Part 1
The Longevity Event
Why do Garfield County and Colorado’s mountain resort areas in general have among the highest life expectancy in the country? Speaker Tony Buettner, with the Blue Zones Project, provides science-based answers on Monday, Sept. 24, during the Glenwood Springs Post Independent’s “The Longevity Project” event at Morgridge Commons/Colorado Mountain College (above the Glenwood Springs Library). Doors open at 5 p.m.; program starts at 6 p.m. Tickets are $25, including food and refreshments, and can be purchased at https://www.postindependent.com/longevity-event/
Editor’s note: Starting today and continuing on consecutive Sundays through Sept. 23, the Glenwood Springs Post Independent will run profiles on the “Super Seniors” of Garfield County aged 80 and older who were nominated online by readers earlier this summer as part of our Longevity Project.
Lyle and Roberta (Turner) Beattie — Never too late
Lyle and Roberta are shining examples of optimism, service, family, joy and love. Having just celebrated their first anniversary, Lyle, 94, and Roberta, 82, were married last year in a ceremony that featured nine flower girls (all great granddaughters) and a great grandson best man.
“These amazing mentors and examples have shown their families that love is eternal, memory sweet, service brings meaning, and that it’s never too late to go for the gusto,” writes their nominator.
Both Lyle and Roberta have served their community through many activities, from their active roles in the Methodist Church, to 60 years in Kiwanis, to Lyle’s service as mayor of Glenwood Springs.
Roberta’s hiking and skiing are legendary. The couple attends weekly concerts in Aspen, enjoy community concerts, walk, love to watch basketball, garden, play scrabble, play tennis and regularly host family and friends in the Beattie-Turner “Bed and Breakfast.”
They have lived in Glenwood Springs for over 120 combined years, both having raised families here. They love sports, music, church, community events and their families, who adore them.
“Their sense of humor, compassion, endless support and wisdom make them examples of all that is beautiful.”
Norma Lea Stanton — Wonder in the water
Norma has a boundless amount of drive, energy and spunk.
On any given morning you can usually find her at the Glenwood Hot Springs Pool where, besides visiting with her “pool family,” she swims back and forth the length of the pool looking for coins that the unsuspecting swimmers drop.
Geared with her snorkel, she dives to the bottom to recover the coins. Then, after collecting a somewhat sizable amount of money she donates it to a worthy cause. Over the years of snorkeling in the pool, she has found countless earrings, necklaces, swimming goggles and even a diamond wedding ring which was returned to its owner after a few months of being wedged in a corner of the pool.
Norma also is a big music fan, and loves to take care of her garden and beautiful home, where she can be found canning, baking, watching her beloved Broncos, fixing a sprinkler head, hosting a game of bridge, creating beautiful handmade greeting cards, cooking for visiting family or hungry hunters and perhaps even plowing snow off her driveway.
Norma often travels to Arizona or California to visit her grandchildren and attend one of their graduations.
On top of all that, Norma says she still makes the time to care for her older sister.
As a cheerful, kind and active person, Norma is a great example of a super senior.
Martha Collison — Rancher strong
Martha Collison is an inspiration to all, and her enthusiasm is contagious.
Martha has skipped retirement entirely.
She is co-owner of Skyline Ranch and Kennel in Carbondale, and oversees and participates in every single aspect of the ranch operation.
Skyline Ranch has become a force in the horse reining world, and Martha has worked tirelessly to assist the local organization with prizes, fundraisers and all the rest that goes into a successful endeavor.
In 2017, Martha placed third in competition and won a silver buckle.
Martha was recently elected to the Board of Directors of Carbondale’s Roaring Fork Valley Co-op.
She is a former owner of the Redstone General Store and served as mayor of the City of Laguna, California.
Rosemarie Troka — Hiking’s her passion
Rosemarie Troka lives in Rifle, is a member of the 100 Club, is 80 years old, still skis, hikes like crazy, and is incredibly active.
If she isn’t going on a hike with the 100 Club, she hikes by herself in her neighborhood. Ten miles is nothing to her.
Chuck and LaVelle Bottineau — Always giving back
LaVelle and Chuck Bottineau of Parachute just celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary. LaVelle is 80 years old, and Chuck is 85.
They love to get high up in the mountains, camping and riding their ATV.
They volunteer every week for the senior lunch program in Parachute, and they clean the Parachute Senior Center every week. They also help when needed to open the medical equipment closet for seniors.
Every week, they play pinochle at the Senior Center and play games and cards with friends three or four times a week.
Currently, they are taking a six-week Cooking Matters course.
They are always willing to help anyone who asks for assistance. Chuck helps many people on Battlement Mesa with yard work or home repairs.
Not only are they able to get themselves to doctor’s appointments in Glenwood Springs or Grand Junction, they are also willing take others to their appointments.
William Bartel — Can’t slow him down
Bill Bartel (“Mr. Bill”) is one of the most energetic and active octogenarian you’ll meet. He can be seen walking all over New Castle and Glenwood Springs every morning and afternoon, averaging seven to 10 miles a day every day of the year.
Bill is also an avid cyclist and has been cycling his whole life.
“He told me he had cycled 7,000 miles a year at one point,” writes his nominator. “That’s more than I put on my car. He also rode with me on the very steep 3.4 miles [Red Mountain] cross trail on my maiden voyage. That was impressive!”
Bill is often seen riding all the county roads between New Castle to Parachute, Rifle and up to Harvey Gap, or riding to breakfast in Carbondale from Two Rivers Park. He even has a mile named after him in Montana, because he rode it so much. Bill is not opposed to trying anything outdoors.
“Mr. Bill has remained quite hip to the times as he is very computer literate, sharp as a stick, and has all the latest gadgets and toys that would put a teenager to shame, lol,” the nominator continues. “A kinder man you could not meet. Bill is a true role model and inspiration of what we all can be. He is living proof that age really is just a number.”
Elizabeth Pruett — Service first
Elizabeth was recently inducted as treasurer for United Methodist Women. She is an active member at First United Methodist Church of Glenwood Springs, and often times is the liturgist at service.
She also participates in a knitting circle that makes shawls and baby sweaters for those in need, her nominator writes. She always makes food for the Extended Table nightly meal for the needy when it is UMW’s time to make a meal. And, she also helps distribute food for Food Bank of the Rockies.
“She is always willing to lend a hand in any way she can, and is involved in many volunteer activities. I am honored to know her as a friend and mentor.”
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