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January/February 2013

ROWDY RULES! The Olympic Icon Inspires Kids to Lead Happier, Healthier Lives


At 84, Orlando Daredevil Joe Kittinger Helps Set Another Skydiving Record

Brushstrokes Represent an Artist’s Second Chance

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LOVE WHERE YOU LIVE! Residents Find Love and Friendship at Del Webb Orlando.



or Harry and Carole Baldwin of Lewes, Del., the Flor-

and Harry are already planning their 50th wedding anniversary in

ida retirement lifestyle wasn’t always appealing. “We

the Del Webb Orlando clubhouse.

had reservations about active adult communities,” Car-

“Our bottom line? We’re home,” Carole said. “This is where

ole explained. “We had an unfortunate incident eight

we want to be, living and loving life at Del Webb Orlando. And

years ago. One community’s attitude toward grandchil-

our grandchildren can come visit anytime they want.”

dren turned us off.”

Del Webb Orlando offers new homes from the $130s, featur-

Grandchildren, however, are what makes the Baldwins’ re-

ing world-class health and wellness amenities that are all part of

tirement worthwhile. Three of their children and five grandchildren

the lifestyle — an endless choice of pastimes, hobbies and events

live in West Virginia, Georgia and Virginia, so they spend many

that make every day new and inspiring. Activities are adminis-

weeks each year on the road visiting.

tered by a fulltime lifestyle director.

Still, despite their misgivings about active adult communities in general, the lure of Florida remained strong for the couple.

Del Webb has been considered the pioneer in active adult communities since its grand opening of Sun City in Arizona.

“We fell in love with the area,” Carole added. “When we

If you’re interested in exploring all that Del Webb Orlando

learned about Del Webb, we looked into it. Given how much we

has to offer, you’re invited to stay at the community through the

love the area, our choice boiled down to the lifestyle. We wanted

Explore Del Webb program. Book your stay for as little as $237

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plus tax for three days. Some rules and restrictions apply.

munity rules and regulations are important, but we want to enjoy ourselves, too.” The Baldwins found what they were looking for at Del Webb Orlando, located in the Polk County city of Davenport, about 45

Call (877) 847-8297 for more details on how to book your stay. Attend a community event, meet the residents and spend the day enjoying a taste of your new life.

“We moved in on June 7, 2012. New neighbors came to said. “Harry joined the golf club, and he was in his element: instant friendships with really great guys.” Carole’s experience was the same. “I met many great ladies at the clubhouse while exercising in the gym and pool,” she said. Now Carole is a member of the Community Service Club, and she’s being nominated as secretary for the new term. Carole

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So visit today -- and love life to the fullest.

minutes west of Orlando the door to welcome us and offered help that first day,” Carole

P u


Del Webb Orlando 225 Ridgewood Lakes Blvd. Davenport, FL 33837 888-496-4071


*Offer Florida residen where and is

12/20/12 4:09:53 PM

Explore Del Webb Orlando Today! Stay 3 Nights for only $237* + tax.

Our residents fall in love with where they live. And how they live.

Explore Del Webb Orlando in 2013! Plan your visit around one of our upcoming 2013 community events. January

‡All Shook Up – An Elvis Presley & Friends Party Saturday, January 12 | 6-9pm

‡Taste of the World - International Food & Wine Event Saturday, January 26 | 11am-2pm


‡Wine & Chocolate Party

Saturday, February 16 | 6:30-10pm

‡ Oscar Red Carpet Party

Sunday, February 24 | 6-8pm

Del Webb Orlando offers an unparalleled active adult lifestyle designed just for you! But don’t take our word for it, nothing showcases the Del Webb lifestyle better than a personal visit, so come out and join us!

‡ ‡ ‡ ‡

30,800 sq. ft. clubhouse

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Outdoor firepit & amphitheater

TechnoGym fitness center Resort-style pool & spa Tennis, pickle ball, bocce ball, and basketball courts

Fishing pier & 12-miles of walking trails Billiards, arts & craft room, and ballroom 24-hour guard-gated privacy


‡Welcome in Spring -

Model Park & Food Tasting Event Saturday, March 9 | 4-6pm

‡Coney Island - Jersey Boy’s Event Saturday, March 23 | 6-10pm

Call 866-671-3330 to RSVP today!

New homes from the $130s 5LGJHZRRG/DNHV'U‡'DYHQSRUW)/

*Offer is only valid on stays from 1/1/13 - 3/31/13. Offer not valid with any other discounts or promotions, and guests may only apply offer towards a single reservation. Offer valid at North Florida Del Webb communities only. At least one resident must be 55 years of age or better, a limited number of residents may be younger and no one under 19 years of age. Some residents may be younger than 55. Community Association fees required. Complete offering terms for the homeowner’s association is in an offering plan available from sponsor. Void where prohibited. Prices reflect base prices and are subject to change without notice. Lot premiums may apply. Details available upon request. Photography is for illustrative purposes only and is not intended to be an actual representation of a specific community, neighborhood, or any completed improvements being offered. CBC039052 Š2012 Pulte Home Corporation.

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12/20/12 3:07:56 PM


How people you know are moving forward and giving back.



A Florida Blue exec turns up the heat while promoting wellness. BY JACKIE CARLIN



How 84-year-old Joe Kittinger helped break another world skydiving record. BY BILL SHAFER


For Martha Jo Mahoney, bold paintings show gratitude for a new lease on life. BY MARC MIDDLETON


How a positive attitude becomes a powerful weapon against cancer. BY JACKIE CARLIN

From bullied kid to Olympic champion, Rowdy Gaines promotes persistence. BY MARC MIDDLETON




An insider’s look at Growing Bolder TV and Growing Bolder Radio. BY BILL SHAFER



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Take smart steps toward vibrant health in 2013. BY DR. SUSAN MITCHELL Growing Bolder: It’s not about age, it’s about attitude. BY MARC MIDDLETON


12/20/12 4:10:19 PM

From the Editor Editor-in-Chief Marc Middleton Managing Editor Bill Shafer Associate Editors Katy Widrick, Jackie Carlin Contributing Writers Wendy Chioji, Jill Middleton, Dr. Susan Mitchell Additional Photography Roberto Gonzalez, Red Bull Stratos, The LIMU Company, LLC Digital Development and Production Jason Morrow, Pasquale Dominick Narciso lV, Josh Doolittle National Brand Manager Beth Dover 407-406-5910 1101 N. Lake Destiny Drive, Suite 120 Maitland, FL 32751

It’s Only the


Do You Deny Your Age or Embrace It? In Our World, We’re Proud of Who We Are.


t Growing Bolder, we live in a world in which people are actually proud of their age and anxious to share it. We live in this world because we produce stories on those who are so engaged in what they

can do that they somehow missed the memo about what they can’t do. People like Lake Mary’s Rowdy Gaines, Polk City’s Kermit Weeks and Orlando’s Jacqueline Jones, all of whom are featured in this issue. These people celebrate the possibilities of life at any age by avoiding the ageist brainwashing so pervasive in our culture. Somehow aging, once associated with strength, beauty and wisdom, has come to represent weakness, ugliness and shame. Unfortunately, this destructive bias jumped from the conference rooms of Madison Avenue and the screening rooms of Hollywood into the psyche of our society. Once we believe the negative stereotypes, we begin sending cues to others that life beyond a certain age is barely worth living. Is there a more tragic message to embrace, a more debilitating legacy to leave behind? I’m not suggesting that middle age doesn’t bring with it many challenges. It does. Just as being 10 or 20 does. Life can be challenging at any age, just as it can be rewarding and immensely satisfying at any age. So how do we keep from drinking the ageism Kool-Aid and serving it to oth-

Group Publisher Randy Noles Art Director Laura Bluhm Senior Associate Publisher Lorna Osborn

ers? We start by becoming comfortable with our age and not apologetic for it. We continue to chase our dreams and reinvent ourselves. We have the power to redefine what it means to grow old, but before we can change society’s mind, we have to change our own. We have to understand that turning 50 or 60 or even 90 is not the end of a meaningful, productive life. In many cases, it’s just the beginning.

Associate Publisher Kathy Byrd Growing Bolder is a publication of Florida Home Media LLC, publishers of Orlando Life magazine. 407-647-0225 2700 Westhall Lane, Suite 128 Maitland, FL 32751 GROWINGBOLDERMAGAZINE.COM

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Marc Middleton Editor ON THE COVER: At 53, Olympic champion Rowdy Gaines is still breaking competitive swimming records while helping kids learn to lead happier, healthier lives. Photograph courtesy The LIMU Company, LLC. GROWING BOLDER


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Growing Bolder With...

People You Know We have the privilege of interviewing and learning from some of the most accomplished people in the U.S. And we ask everyone we interview to share something that keeps them motivated; something from which we can all learn; something that demonstrates how they, too, are Growing Bolder.

Jacqueline Jones


Kermit Weeks

Singer, Performer, Entertainer


Fantasy of Flight Creator, Aviator

“At any point on anybody’s journey, there’s the opportunity for taking a step beyond yourself. I don’t care about your physical condition. Your age and your perception of reality can be transcended by your belief system. And it doesn’t mean you have to climb Mount Everest, be the first guy to go to Mars or the next guy to go to the moon. All that matters is that you take a step beyond what you perceive yourself to be.” Kermit Weeks, owner of Fantasy of Flight in Polk City, uses aviation as a means to motivate and inspire others.

GB EXTRA Watch an exclusive video of Kermit Weeks showing off his unmatched classic airplane collection, only at

“I try to be happy about what I can do and not worry about what I cannot do. Don’t get me wrong. Sometimes it sneaks up on me and worries me like a big dog. Sometimes I wake up and want to have the biggest pity party you’ve ever seen and have it catered in bed. But I pull myself out of that.” Jacqueline Jones, Central Florida jazz icon, suffered a near fatal ruptured aneurysm but recovered to resume performing.

GB EXTRA Watch an exclusive video of Jacqueline Jones singing some of her most beloved songs and telling her incredible life story, only at

Melanie Lentz-Janney


Filmmaker, Marketing Professional

GB EXTRA Watch an exclusive video featuring interviews with Melanie Lentz-Janney and Rick Springfield, only at 6


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“When I started, I didn’t have a penny to make this film and had never produced a film before, but I coupled my business savvy with an unwavering belief that failure was not an option. I believe with every fiber of my being that anything and everything is possible in life. You just have to believe it will happen. I’m still in awe I had an opportunity to work with the guy who was plastered all over my bedroom walls at 15. How cool is that?” Melanie Lentz-Janney, marketing professional, produced Affair of the Heart, an award-winning film about pop star Rick Springfield. The film recently made its European debut at the International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam. JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2013

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Family Caregiver... We Care for You! Uncertain and Anxious? Tired? Stressed? Do you neglect yourself... need “me” time? one and you! ❖ Home visits to manage patient’s pain and symptoms ❖ Emotional and spiritual support for everyone ❖ 24-hour assistance and advice ❖ Patient Bathing and Personal Care ❖ And so much more for those facing serious illness Patient with caregiver wife an Cornerstone Hospice Social Worker

Information Referrals (888)728-6234 and (866)742-6655 Medicare, Medicaid, most commercial insurances accepted. 3GB_Jan13_GB With FP Rock Stars.indd 7 Cornerstone Hospice GB.indd 1

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Healthy 100 Executive Challenge

He’s Turned Up the Heat Florida Blue Exec Sweats It Out While Promoting Wellness. by Jackie Carlin


the state’s largest health insurer, has redefined healthy lifestyle involves much more than just logging time on a treadmill. It’s about itself as a health solutions company, not just a health insurance company. finding ways to incorporate fitness and wellness into every aspect of your life. Sometimes, Through its Florida Blue neighborhood centers, which are popping up across the state, the comit’s about turning up the heat. Three years ago, a friend introduced Tony Jenkins, pany offers anyone — Florida Blue members and non-members alike — free health Florida Blue’s market president for assessments and consultations Central and Northwest Florida, to with nurses on wellness issues. Bikram yoga and its 105-degree As a top executive at Florida workout rooms. At first he wasn’t Blue, Tony believes it’s both an obconvinced. But now it’s a regular ligation and an honor to promote part of the 55-year-old’s personal wellness régime. health and wellness throughout the community. And that means In fact, Tony was surprised that being a role model for both cola weekly (and very hot) 90-minute leagues and customers. yoga class turned out to be the “Healthy employees make for exercise he enjoyed the most. healthy businesses,” Tony says. “The heat can be a challenge, “We all realize in our industry that but I block that out because the to really control costs, you’ve got benefits are so amazing,” Tony to get at health care on the front says. “Hot yoga not only builds strength and stamina, it’s also end. And that means motivating Tony Jenkins has become a devoand empowering employees to get helped me become much more flexible and agile. In many ways, tee of Bikram yoga, which involves themselves fit.” a 105-degree workout room. it’s turned back the clock. I feel Florida Blue’s new slogan is “In younger now than I did 10 years ago. Best of Pursuit of Health.” For Tony, it’s far more than just a slogan. It’s a way of life. ■ all, when I leave the class, I’m tired but totally energized.” GB EXTRA For Tony, the benefits of a healthy, active lifestyle Watch exclusive video of Tony Jenkins in the yoga studio, only spill over into his professional life. Florida Blue, at

The Healthy 100 Central Florida Executive Challenge celebrates local business and civic leaders who provide the inspiration and the opportunity for their employees to pursue wellness. It’s leading by example, with executives who commit to a lifestyle of health and fitness, and encourage their employees to do the same. Other challengers include Tupperware’s Simon Hemus, Florida Hospital’s Lars Houmann and Rosen Hotels and Resorts’ Harris Rosen. Nominate someone in your company who is inspiring you at 8




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Married 58 years and they still spend lunch together every day. Each afternoon Dottie rides her golf cart from her cottage on our lake to her standing lunch date with her husband, Harvey. She loves watching his face light up when the nurses rave over his blue eyes. It gives Dottie great comfort knowing Harvey is in the best hands here. Not only does he get the absolute finest care; she gets to see him smile.

When somebody you love needs care, you want to know that care is available every hour of every day, which is why we have a licensed nurse at Oak View around the clock. No matter what the need, regardless of how big or small, our staff provides the personal attention, day and night. We put our heart into caring for people like Harvey – because we care like family. Need help for someone you love? We’re here for you both. Let’s start a conversation. Call us at 1-800-880-0862.


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THE POWER OF PASSION From Bullied Kid to Olympic Champion, Rowdy Gaines Promotes Persistence.


By Marc Middleton

t’s recess at an elementary school in Winter Haven, Florida, in 1967. Rowdy Gaines, a shy, skinny, fourthgrader, is hiding inside a stall in the boys room, standing silently on the toilet seat and hoping that this time, the school bullies don’t find him.

Fast-forward 45 years. It’s just before recess at an elementary school in Orlando. Rowdy, now a three-time Olympic Champion, NBC broadcaster and the fastest over-50 swimmer in history, is talking to fourth-graders about bullying. “I have zero tolerance for bullies,” he tells the class. “It isn’t just up to your parents and teachers to stop bullying; it’s up to you. Report bullies. And be kind to people who are being bullied. Let them know they aren’t alone.” Inspiring and protecting kids has always been an important part of Rowdy’s life, but became even 10

Growing Bolder

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more so when he moved his family to Lake Mary in 2006 to work for LIMU, a company that makes nutritional products. LIMU CEO Gary Raser was homeless as a child and wanted Rowdy to be more than just a company spokesman. “Gary wanted me to make a real difference in the lives of kids, and he didn’t want anyone left out,” Rowdy says. Rowdy’s girls (left to right): Granddaughter Bella and daughters Emily, 25; Isabel, 13; Savanna, 18, and Madison, 22. JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2013

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“Self-discipline is the cornerstone of nearly every desirable personal quality.” -Rowdy Gaines Growing BOlder 11

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“I’d be satisfied if I was remembered only as a good husband, a good father, a good son and a loyal friend.” -Rowdy Gaines

Rowdy covers Olympic swimming for NBC Sports in addition to his work with LIMU, a maker of nutritional products, and the company’s nonprofit initiative, Rowdy’s Kidz. He also continues to set swimming records in Masters competition. So they started Rowdy’s Kidz, a nonprofit initiative that encourages youngsters to lead healthy and inspired lifestyles. Rowdy now travels an average of 20 days a month visiting children’s hospitals, speaking at elementary schools and conducting free swimming clinics before delivering motivational speeches to LIMU distributors. Rowdy’s life provides enough material for a lifetime of inspirational speeches. He didn’t start swimming until his junior year in high school, and then only after failing at every other sport. “What we’re naturally good at, even what we’re born to do, is not always apparent,” he notes. “I was cut from football, baseball, tennis, golf and track before I found swimming. The real secret to success is not giving up, and that requires self-discipline.” 12

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Rowdy’s self-discipline became obvious when college coaches began noticing his times. “They all said I needed to work out twice a day, but our team didn’t have morning practices,” he recalls. So he snuck into nearby motel pools and worked out alone in the dark before school. “There were five hotels in the Winter Haven area, and I would work out at one until the manager asked me to leave. I moved to the next motel and worked out there until that manager asked me to leave. Once I got kicked out of all five, I returned to the first one and started over again.” It wasn’t an ideal training regimen, but it was enough to earn Rowdy a scholarship to Auburn University, where he won five NCAA championships and established himself as the world’s best sprinter. In April 1980, he set a world record at the U.S. Nationals and would have been a heavy favorite at the 1980 Summer Olympics in Moscow. But the U.S. boycotted the games following the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan. In the 1980s, when college was over, so were swimming careers. Unlike today, there were no professional swimmers. Believing that his Olympic dreams had been permanently dashed, Rowdy decided to quit the sport after graduating in 1981. However, encouraged by his father, he called upon his self-discipline once again, committing to four more years of training. During those four years, he set 11 world records before winning three gold medals at the 1984 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles and establishing himself as one of greatest swimming champions ever. What did he do with his gold medals, the most coveted award in sports? He gave them all away — one each to his mother, his father and his coach. In 1991, Rowdy encountered a more serious setback when he was stricken with Guillain-Barré JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2013

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Syndrome, a potentially Rowdy still holds Masters deadly neurological disorlong-course world records in der that left him paralyzed several freestyle events. At the for six painful months. 2011 Short Course Masters Within one year, however, Nationals, he broke his own he was back in the Masters national record in the 50-54 National Championships, division 50-yard freestyle. The setting world records. same year he also set the 50-54 ”It wasn’t easy. Doctors division record in the longsay the only reason I fully course 100-meter freestyle. recovered is that I worked No one knows Rowdy betincredibly hard and was ter than Judy, his wife of 27 in great shape to begin years. “There is no pretense in with, thanks to swimming,” Rowdy,” she says. “What you Rowdy says. “That gave me see is what you get, and when Rowdy’s wife, Judy, says her high-profile an even greater passion for it comes to being kind, caring, husband is patient and unpretentious. the sport.” gracious and generous, he’s the At the age of 35, Rowdy became the oldest swimreal deal. He’s extremely patient, and I’m always mer to qualify for the trials for the 1996 Summer trying to model that behavior.” Olympics in Atlanta. He chose not to compete, Rowdy and Judy have four daughters: Emily, 25; instead covering the competition as a commentator Madison, 22; Savanna, 18; and Isabel, 13. “And we for NBC Sports. now have our first grandchild,” Rowdy says proud“I auditioned in 1995 with Greg Gumbel,” he ly. “My retirement dream is to buy an RV and travel recalls. “I fumbled my words and I wasn’t even the around the country with Judy, visiting our kids most knowledgeable candidate, but I was the most and grandkids, competing in Masters meets and passionate. Dick Ebersol (former NBC Sports Presigiving a speech every now and then.” dent) told me that passion is what attracts viewers. Until then, Rowdy remains busy inspiring kids, That’s why I’m still here, five Olympics later. “ setting records, promoting the sport he loves and Rowdy’s passion has also been a major benefit to sharing the life lessons he’s learned. U.S. Masters Swimming, a national organization with “I’ve come to believe that self-discipline is the more than 55,000 members. He competes regularly cornerstone of nearly every desirable personal in Masters meets and hosts his own adult swimquality,” he says. “If you don’t have discipline, you ming invitational every October in Orlando. Whencan’t acquire the rest. I’ve learned the importance ever he competes, Rowdy is approached for photos, of maintaining a healthy lifestyle. I’ve learned the autographs and race advice. He graciously accompower of passion and persistence. modates every request, even if it’s just moments “Mostly, I’ve learned that being a great swimmer before a race or means missing his own race. is nice, but it’s not what’s really important. I’d “Swimming is so fortunate to have Rowdy be satisfied if I was remembered only as a good Gaines as our ambassador,” says Rob Butcher, Exhusband, a good father, a good son and a loyal ecutive Director of U.S. Masters Swimming.  “Even friend.“ n after his Olympic stardom, Rowdy has stayed acGB EXTRA tive in swimming. He’s a believer and encourager Watch exclusive video of Rowdy organizing, announcing and that everyone and anyone — children to adults — competing at his annual Masters Classic, only at should swim.” Growing BOlder 13

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Behind the Scenes

Backstage at GB TV & Radio Take a peek behind the scenes at Growing Bolder. We’re always on the move, seeking out big-time celebrities, international experts and ordinary people living extraordinary lives, and we love being able to take you along with us. Here’s what we’ve been up to lately.

by Bill Shafer

Never Leave the Playground

Here are two guys who’ve both found the Fountain of Youth in the same place — their childhoods. First, Stephen Jepson believes all you need to stay young is a playground. Stephen says the key to never losing your balance, or your brain, is play, and he’s created a fascinating set of activities based on simple childhood games that he says will prevent falls and help stave off dementia. And he’s gaining a worldwide following. Growing Bolder Production Director Jason Morrow’s passion for great video began with the TV shows and movies that mesmerized him as a boy. So when Stephen and Jason got together, it was playtime. Stephen juggled, walked a slack rope, threw knives, climbed ladders and showed off some one-of-a-kind inventions.

GB EXTRA Watch exclusive video of Stephen Jepson’s unusual agility exercises and games, only at 14


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Tune into Growing Bolder on WUCF-TV Sundays at noon, Thursdays at 6 p.m. and Fridays at 12:30 a.m. Find complete national listings at Tune into Growing Bolder Radio on WMFE 90.7 on Saturdays at 3 p.m. and Sundays at 7 a.m. JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2013

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Behind the Scenes

All-Star News Anchors Team Up

Amazing things can happen when some of Central Florida’s all-time most popular news anchors get together. Growing Bolder’s Wendy Chioji, Marc Middleton and Bill Shafer team up with Lauren Rowe and Gaard Swanson of WKMG Local 6 to debut Surviving & Thriving, the first in a series of quarterly one-hour specials featuring real stories about real people who refuse to give in when confronted with the kinds of challenges that ultimately face us all. Produced by the Growing Bolder team, Surviving & Thriving is a unique program filled with hope, inspiration and possibility. Share your story at

A-List Guests in Studio-B Even though Growing Bolder Radio emanates from the world-class studios of WMFE-FM 90.7, having a Studio-B at the GB Worldwide Headquarters in Maitland has proven to be quite valuable. Some guests aren’t available when the WMFE studio is, so the GB team can move to Studio-B at a moment’s notice. That’s given Marc and Bill the opportunity to bring you conversations with such stars as rocker Randy Bachman, actress Linda Evans and the one-and-only Christopher Walken. Listen for more great guests every weekend on WMFE-FM and tune in 24/7 to Growing Bolder Radio. Just click “Listen Live” at radio.

Comments and Suggestions: Subscribe to Insider Newsletter: Growing Bolder Website: Growing Bolder TV Listings: Growing Bolder Radio Schedule: Facebook: 16


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12/21/12 11:28:25 AM

Bolder Adventure



Last October a young Austrian daredevil had the guts, desire and financial backing to attempt the highest skydive in human history — from 24 miles above the Earth’s surface. But Felix Baumgartner knew he needed help from the only man alive with the knowledge to greatly increase his chances of success. To lead his privately funded team, sponsored by the energy-drink company Red Bull, the 43-year-old called upon 84-year-old retired USAF Col. Joseph W. Kittinger of Orlando. In 1960, then Capt. Kittinger leaped into history when he became the first person to skydive from the very edge of space, 102,800 feet. His 4-minute, 36-second freefall during the “Project Excelsior” jump for the U.S. Air Force remains the longest freefall ever. (Baumgartner’s freefall was from a higher point but lasted “only” 4 minutes, 19 seconds.) Kittinger would go on to become a decorated fighter pilot who endured 11 months as a prisoner of war in North Vietnam’s infamous Hanoi Hilton. In 1984, he became the first person to cross the Atlantic Ocean solo in a helium balloon. In 1997, he was enshrined in the National Aviation Hall of Fame.

Supersonic Leap of Faith How 84-Year-Old Joe Kittinger Helped Make It Happen. By Bill Shafer You’ve had a pretty exciting year — lots of work, lots of travel, lots of pressure. Where has life taken you and how are you holding up? I’ve been working on the Red Bull Stratos project for four years. I was very fortunate to have such an exciting challenge at my age. Felix Baumgartner felt there was nobody else alive who knew exactly what to expect every step of the way. Because of the great work of my team over 50 years ago, there 18


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were many things I was able to contribute to help Felix be successful. And with his jump from an altitude of 128,100 feet, I’d say he was. ■■■ Many people are surprised that you’d work as hard as you did to help someone else break your long-standing records. Why did you? I’ve always felt that records are made to be broken. For me, it was always about the research. JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2013

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photos: red bull stratos

The theory we established in 1960 and the equipment we used is still the standard today. Every ejection seat in the world uses a small stabilization parachute. We helped develop that technology. Now it’s time to make some new advances. Ultimately, what we’re trying to do is continue to contribute to the safety and well-being of all aviators and astronauts. nnn We shouldn’t be surprised, but you’re well past the age that most people start slowing down. Yet, at 84, you’re not only very busy, you’re still seeking new adventures, pushing the boundaries and living life to the fullest. I feel like I live the philosophy of Growing Bolder: I keep active, learn new skills, never give up and stay curious. Each day is a blessing. I have a lovely wife, and I look forward to every day. Life still holds many wonders. Age, to me, is just a number. nnn You’re an interesting mix of two seemingly different characteristics. On one hand, you’re a fearless adventurer and risk-taker. On the other, you’re a cautious and meticulous planner. How do the two co-exist inside you? Risk-taking goes hand-in-hand with meticulous planning. With the Red Bull Stratos project, we agreed Felix would make three jumps. That’s the way I planned my Excelsior project. The whole team benefited from what we learned in the first

At 84, Joe Kittinger (left) was recruited by Felix Baumgartner when the Austrian daredevil decided to try and break a longstanding record for the highest skydive. Joe set the original record in 1960, leaping to earth from the very edge of space.

two jumps. So when it came time to go, we were ready. Calculated risks you can weigh. Foolish risks you cannot. nnn You’ve boldly gone headlong into the unknown throughout your life. Yet perhaps the greatest unknown is the adventure of age. What have you discovered about the later years of life? I’ve had a wonderful, adventurous life and I’ve accomplished a lot. Some people say, never volunteer for anything. I say volunteer for everything. Everything I did as a fighter pilot, as a researcher and as an adventurer happened because I raised my hand to volunteer. I helped direct my path by setting goals and looking for opportunities. I’ve been a very, very fortunate person. And the later years of life can be equally as exciting. So my advice is: There are always opportunities for adventures; you just need to keep a sharp eye out to find the ones that fascinate you. Once you do, then go for it. n

GB EXTRA Watch exclusive video of Joe’s record-setting jump from the edge of space, only at Growing BOlder 19

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bolder arts


For Martha Jo Mahoney, Bold Paintings Show Gratitude for a New Lease on Life.


By Marc Middleton

artha Jo Mahoney has a large brush on the end of a pole in one hand as she fences with a canvas covering an entire wall in her studio. With every lunge, every attack, every bold brush stroke, she translates memories of her travels, impressions of her adventures, into abstract images. ”This is called snorkeling,” she explains as she rubs her fingers through the paint, smearing large streaks of bright color. “I paint because I have to. It’s my soul. It’s my language. It’s what I have to say to you. And this is how I say it.” Like most accomplished abstract painters, Martha has the technical expertise to paint realistic landscapes or portraits. But it’s the challenge of abstraction that draws her into the studio every day. “In about 1995, I started abstracting, and once I abstracted, I never looked back,” she says. “I found what I really love to do. It’s constant problem solv20

ing. You’re always adding to or taking away, trying to say more with less.“ While painting is how Martha communicates with the world, it’s also how she escapes it: “When I paint, I forget about anything else that might be bugging me. Anything I’m upset about, I can take it out right here on the canvas and scare the hell out of myself. But I get it out here, and sometimes it’s the best work I’ve done.” Martha has a small, bright workspace at Winter Park’s McRae Art Studios, a large warehouseturned-collective that’s home to 22 of Central

Growing Bolder

The Grammy-winning entertainer has difficulty with his short-term memory, but is still wowing audiences with his undiminished musicianship. Somehow, music

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Florida’s top fine artists. McRae offers Martha a private studio and, at the same time, the community and camaraderie of other successful artists. “It really helps to be around other artists,” she says. “Even though we work in different ways, in different media, we all share the same creative struggles.“ Martha’s work wins major awards, has been shown nationwide and is collected worldwide. But her biggest commission — literally — is the 45-foot-tall abstract mural on the side of the One Eleven office building in downtown Orlando. The critics loved it, but she knew it was a big deal “when my aunt came down from Kalamazoo to see it.”

“When I paint, I forget about anything else that might be bugging me.” - Martha Jo Mahoney Now in her mid-60s, Martha believes that she’s doing her best work ever. “Age doesn’t matter at all. It’s a state of mind,” she insists. That state of mind was severely tested just over a year ago when she was diagnosed with aortic Growing BOlder 21

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tha, every new day is now a valve stenosis, a disease gift that she’s determined not of the heart valves that to waste: “I can’t wait to get can lead to sudden death. up, get into the studio and She was in such bad shape get a brush in my hand. It that doctors recommended makes me feel so alive.” risky open-heart surgery Ultimately, creating a to transplant a life-saving great painting is a lot like bovine valve. creating a great life — and As the surgery neared, Martha fully understands Martha spent more time that the goal for both is the with her family and same; “To reach the point friends and more time in where I don’t believe one the studio painting her Martha’s biggest commission – literally – is a 45more stroke would add impressions of what might foot-tall abstract mural on the side of the One anything; to be able to say I lie ahead. She titled one Eleven office building in downtown Orlando. like it just the way it is.” n canvas “The Gathering” because she said it represented her strength and spirit “and the fact that we’re all gathering to see if I make it. “ Martha Jo Mahoney’s work can be seen and purThe operation was a success, but recovery hasn’t chased locally at Be On Park, 152 South Park Ave. been easy. “It has taken me a year to feel OK again, in Winter Park. Call (407) 644-1106 for more informaand if not for my husband, my family, my friends tion or visit and my painting, I’m not sure I would have made it,” she says. “I still struggle with the knowledge GB EXTRA that my life could be over at any time.” Watch exclusive video of Martha Jo Mahoney painting in her That’s a reality we all live with, or should. For Marstudio, only at 22

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Surviving and Thriving

‘Cancer Can’t Define Me’ How a Positive Attitude Becomes a Powerful Weapon. by Jackie Carlin


ast February, Bobbie Wolgemuth underwent surgery to remove a growth on her ovary, certain it was nothing serious. When she woke up, her husband shared the news they never expected. “He said, ‘It’s stage IV ovarian cancer,’ and I said, ‘Well how many stages are there?’ He said, ‘four.’”Given that diagnosis, most people would have feared the worst. Most people aren’t Bobbie. “That sounds very scary, but to God there are no stages,” Bobbie says. “With faith and with joy and with a grateful heart, I will walk through this.” With the help of family, friends and a team of doctors, that’s exactly what she’s done. But she’s done more than just survive -- she’s thrived. Thanks to an art class at MD Anderson Cancer

Center Orlando, Bobbie also discovered a new passion – painting. “By the time I finished six chemo treatments, I had six paintings. I almost felt like I was looking forward to chemotherapy days,” she says. Bobbie also surrounded herself with friends and family. As it turns out, that kind of support is exactly what the doctor prescribes. “Overall, I’ve found that people do much better longer if they have a support system,” says Veronica Schimp, D.O., a gynecological oncologist at MD Anderson-Orlando. “It’s about having love — all this love both inside and outside yourself.” Amazingly, Bobbie describes the past year not as a battle but rather a gift. “I want to live today the same, whether I have 30 minutes or 30 years left,” she says. “I want to give hope to anybody that wonders, ‘Can you have peace in the midst of a devastating trial?’ Yes, you can.” ■■■ Breast cancer survivor Julie Tharp also believes in the power of positive thinking. Following her diagnosis, she endured months of radiation and chemo and, ultimately, a mastectomy. She lost her breast, her hair and her strength— but never her resolve. “I was given a diagnosis, but that doesn’t mean the diagnosis is going to own me,” Julie says. “I’m going to own the diagnosis, and I want to do this on my terms.” Julie’s doctor says that attitude Bobbie Wolgemuth says friends and family, including her husband, alone is a huge piece of the puzzle Robert, helped her deal with a diagnosis of stage IV ovarian cancer. in fighting cancer. “I’m a big beShe says she now cherishes every day and goes through life “with faith liever that a patient’s outlook and and with joy and with a grateful heart.” 24


The Grammy-winning entertainer has difficulty with his short-term memory, but is still wowing audiences with his undiminished musicianship. Somehow, music

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attitude is everything,” says Nikita Shah, M.D., a medical oncologist at MD Anderson-Orlando. “You may have five people with the same diagnosis, at the same stage, and the people who have a positive outlook tend to do so much better.” Dr. Shah says one of the unique aspects of MD Anderson-Orlando is its team approach to treatment, in which oncologists, surgeons, genetic counselors, nutritionists and mind-bodyspirit counselors come together to create a plan of action. “All of these people work together to help the patient as a whole. We’re not treating the disease; we’re treating the patient, the whole person,” Dr. Shah adds. One year later, Julie’s body is cancer free, but her heart is filled with a fervent wish for the many others facing a similar fight: Dr. Nikita Shah, M.D (left), a medical oncologist at MD Anderson Cancer “Live your life. Don’t let cancer Center Orlando, treated Julie Tharp’s breast cancer. Today, Julie is cancer stop you from doing anything. Go free and enjoys bringing baked goods to hospital staffers. “Live your out in public. Take your wig off, life,” Julie says. “Don’t let cancer stop you from doing anything.” let people look at you. You’re not defined by your hair, you’re not GB EXTRA defined by cancer, you’re defined by how you lived Watch exclusive interviews with Bobbie, Julie and their physicians, only at through it.” ■

Growing Bolder has partnered with WKMG Local 6 and MD Anderson Cancer Center-Orlando to bring you a new one-of-a-kind television program. Surviving & Thriving tells the inspiring and uplifting stories of ordinary people who have overcome disease, trauma and adversity to live extraordinary lives. To find show times, learn more about the people featured and to share your story of survival, visit GROWINGBOLDERMAGAZINE.COM

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Bolder Nutrition

Time For a Bold New You Take Some Smart Steps Toward Vibrant Health in 2013. by Dr. Susan Mitchell


hy write a list of resolutions only to dump them the first week of January? Then guilt and self-deprecation set in. Who needs that? Instead, take a broad view of your health. Change, lasting change, doesn’t happen in a day or a week, regardless of what that new diet product promises. Success calls for consistent small steps over time. In our frenetic, 24/7 world, personal health often slips down the list of priorities. But you can take control and empower yourself with a real-world plan that encompasses a full year of activities. Use this guide to get through the first six months. If you stick to it, you’ll be thrilled at the positive changes in your mental and physical well-being. Plus, you’ll have some some fun in the process. ■ January. Jumpstart 2013 with a brutally honest assessment of your health. What areas need addressing? Develop a realistic list of items and focus on just one per month. Give each item priority and set appointment times to address it, just as you do for work and other commitments. ■ February. Fill up your pantry with easy-to-fix, tasty and healthy food items for those hectic days when you need to pull together a meal quickly. Consider these smart foods to start with: Tuna, salmon or chicken in a pouch or can; roasted red peppers; kalamata olives; fire-roasted tomatoes; variety of canned beans; brown or green lentils; quick-cook brown rice; quinoa nuts; whole-wheat/ whole grain pastas; chicken and vegetable broths with reduced sodium; pasta sauce; balsamic vinegar; honey and olive oil.



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■ March. Mulch, manure and a mission: plant a garden. Whether it’s a few tomatoes, lettuces and herbs in pots or a large area in your yard that you share with a neighbor, homegrown food is about as locally sourced as you can get. ■ April. Appreciate your first quarter results. Then reboot: review your list and retool your appointments if needed on your calendar. ■ May. Move it and lose it. Logging way too many hours of screen time in what I refer to as the bubble-butt chair? Find activities that are fun, not a chore. Continue to work in your garden. Wear a pedometer and track your steps each day. Work up to 10,000 steps per day, which is equal to five miles. Whatever you choose to do, make it enjoyable or you won’t do it. ■ June. Jump at the chance to eat fresh and local. Produce, whether from your garden, a farm stand or grocer, is bountiful this time of year. Up the number of fruits and vegetables you eat daily. Be sure to check out the next issue of Growing Bolder magazine for more tips on how to make the second half of the year just as healthy as the first. ■

Dr. Susan Mitchell is the consultant, registered dietitian and nutrition expert for Growing Bolder. She also serves on the Health Advisory Board for Family Circle magazine. She is co-author of Fat is Not Your Fate, I’d Kill for a Cookie, and Eat to Stay Young. Listen to her weekly podcast where she shares real-world health tips, recipes and more at and JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2013

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The Takeaway

Move Forward, Give Back Growing Bolder: It’s Not About Age, it’s About Attitude. by Marc Middleton


e often say that Growing Bolder is not about age, it’s about attitude, and 13year-old Talia Castellano of Oviedo is the perfect example. In 2007, Talia was diagnosed with a rare childhood cancer and began a battle that has now consumed half of her life. Years of radiation, chemotherapy, surgery and stem cell transplants have beat the cancer into remission three times — only to have it relapse. Talia recently learned that the cancer has spread to her bone marrow and she has a second cancer — pre-leukemia. Talia fully understands the reality and gravity of her situation, but says she’ll never give up hope and never give up looking forward to a better future: “They said four months to a year, but I’ve heard that before.” Her dream, which was born when she began losing her hair from chemotherapy, is to become a celebrity makeup artist. “I hated wearing a wig,” she says. “I hated how I looked, and I had very low self-esteem. So I took the wig off and began experimenting with makeup. Almost immediately I felt better about myself, and it clicked that I was using makeup as my wig.” So Talia began studying every tutorial she could find and quickly discovered a natural talent. Without hesitation, she did what many aspiring stars do — she started her own YouTube channel. She proved to be an engaging communicator, and her makeup lessons and product reviews quickly found an audience. It didn’t take long for viewers to wonder about Talia’s lack of hair, and the more she talked about her cancer, the more subscribers she attracted.



Within months, she had more than 180,000 subscribers, 14 million video views and a legion of fans worldwide. “I realized I could not only inspire cancer patients, but could also inform others about the need to fund research for childhood cancers,” she says. When Ellen DeGeneres learned of Talia’s dream, she flew her to Los Angeles, featured her on her TV show and gave her a lifetime supply of cosmetics as well as a check for $20,000 and a job interviewing such stars as Miley Cyrus and the Jonas Brothers at the IHeartRadio Music Festival in Las Vegas. It’s been both the best year and the worst year of Talia’s young life. Despite facing a deadly diagnosis and spending months in a hospital bed, she continued chasing her dreams while finding a way to help others. Cancer has given her a purpose and a platform to help raise awareness about childhood cancer. “I’m only 13,” she says. “It’s really not fair for kids to have cancer. We have the brains to find the cure. We just don’t have the funding.” Moving forward while giving back. That’s Growing Bolder. If this little girl, who has been robbed of her childhood, can still dream, believe and persist, how can we do anything less? ■


E p l s m

T a a

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It’s time to live to a Healthy100.

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At The Mayflower, you have the freedom and flexibility to customize your home and your retirement lifestyle to make them uniquely yours. And while you’re having fun doing that, you’ll also have the guarantee of pre-funded long-term care. That’s what prompted residents like Ann and Pete Cross to plan ahead and proactively make the move . . . because they wanted to, not because they needed to. How about you?

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Growing Bolder Jan/Feb 2013  

Growing Bolder is the magazine about Hope. Inspiration. Possibility. We hope to instill the DNA of our successful Growing Bolder TV and radi...

Growing Bolder Jan/Feb 2013  

Growing Bolder is the magazine about Hope. Inspiration. Possibility. We hope to instill the DNA of our successful Growing Bolder TV and radi...