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Inside... John McNeer

Newton philanthropist and traveler turns 80 this year ................. p. 3

Sue Manning

Monroe basketball player shares her love for the game ................. p. 5

Fred Matthias

Retired Newton lawyer exercises and rides bike daily ..................... p. 7

Senior Lifestyles April 2014

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Senior Lifestyles • April 2014

Community for Healthy Living

is more than a Continuing Care Retirement Community. We support the independence, health and well-being of older adults wherever they call home.

Yes, Park Center does offer you: • Adult Day Services • Independent Apartment Living • Town Home Living • Assisted Living Apartments • Healthcare Unit • Skilled Rehabilitation Private Suites • Memory Support Unit

In Addition,

Park Centre supports your healthy living wherever you call home by offering you:

• Willowbrook, a WesleyLife Adult Day Center • In-Home Health Care • Home Care Aide Services • Wellness program with a Dedicated Full-time Wellness Team • First Street Bistro (open to the public)

CALL TODAY AT 641-791-5000 TO SCHEDULE A TOUR OR TO CHOOSE YOUR NEW HOME! 500 First Street North Newton, IA 50208 Directly West of Skiff Medical Center

3 Senior Lifestyles • April 2014

3 Zach Johnson/Daily News John McNeer has been to 65 countries and 4 providences in his nearly 80 years. However, Newton is still the place he is proud calls home.

Living life to the fullest for 80 years and counting By Zach Johnson Daily News Staff Writer

On March 1 1947, John D. McNeer pulled into Newton at the age of 13 and began working little did he know 67 years later, he would still be in Newton living by his greatest advice for people today. “Live life to the fullest and don’t look for fly specs in the pepper.” McNeer spent most of his time working in the garden on the acre and half property his family owned north of Newton. He found his first paying job working for farmers around his family farm at 50 cents per hour. “Fifty-cents per hour was real good money back then,” McNeer said. “I would go to school during the day, when I would get off

the bus after school, I would work eight hours a day for farmers.” McNeer and his country school buddy Ron Forbes walked over to Newton Manufacturing Company for a summer internship. Forbes would get a job at Newton Office Supply, which Forbes became the owner of the office supply store that is now Forbes Office Solution. McNeer began on his own journey starting on June 6, 1947, at Newton Manufacturing. “Newton Manufacturing paid me 75 cents per hour, which was even better money,” McNeer said. McNeer mowed the lawn on his first day of working at Newton Manufacturing. “It was a very hot day, and we didn’t have a motorized lawn mower, it was a push mower,” McNeer said. “I took breaks by the building,

so the bosses couldn’t see me taking a break.” Most of the workers from Newton Manufacturing clocked out at 4 p.m. McNeer put in two and a half extra hours a day digging trenches on the property. “The soil was filled with bricks and rocks, which caused me to build up a good sweat,” McNeer said. “It was the beginning of learning the greatest lesson that I learned from working at Newton Manufacturing, which is do a good job and do it well, put your heart into it.” At the end of his first day, McNeer found himself late for dinner and a half serious thought of not going back to Newton Manufacturing. “After I told my father about it, he looked at me and said, ‘You darn sure are going to work. No one ever

quit a job on the first day.’,” McNeer said. “I worked through the summers of my high school years.” McNeer found himself ready for college, but without the means or the encouragement to go to school. The Senior Vice President of Newton Manufacturing Harold A. Lufkin took McNeer under his wing by training him in many departments in the company. “Lufkin told me that if you stick with us, we will give you the best business education you could ever get,” McNeer said. It was from that point that McNeer worked his way up to Senior Vice President in Newton Manufacturing to retire on Dec. 31 1991. Staff writer Zach Johnson may be contacted at (641) 792-3121, ext. 425, or at zjohnson@

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Senior Lifestyles • April 2014

How to banish those gray hairs Metro Creative Connection

Roughly one in five Americans uses hair dye to enhance their looks or hide gray hair. But concerns about gray hair and looking older are not exclusive to the United States. The trouble with gray hair — and especially hair close to the temples — is that such hair tends to be more coarse and more resistant to absorbing hair color than other hair. It can be difficult to cover the gray hairs, and then once it is dyed, gray hair may end up showing prematurely. Gray hair results from the hair cortex, or the middle layer of the hair, losing both the yellow and red pigments that are normally present in the

strands. In order to successfully cover grays, these pigments need to be replaced using dyes that have red, yellow and blue bases. Shades characterized as “neutral” are usually the best bets. Avoid ash colors, which tend to have a blue, green or violet base. The hair shaft will pick up the underlying color but not absorb the intended color. Resistant grays may need the color solution to remain on much longer than is normal or recommended. Sometimes it can take up to 45 minutes for resistant grays to absorb dye. Certain manufacturers make dyes that are designed specifically for gray hair and allow for better penetration.

Sometimes gray hair may need to be pre-softened with peroxide prior to color application. The peroxide will raise the hair shaft and enable the color to penetrate better. Coloring hair at home is possible, but may not produce the most desirable results, and there is a greater chance of user error with drug store coloring products. When making drastic changes to hair color, it may be best to consult with a professional stylist and discuss color preferences. The stylist can then create a custom color and apply it evenly to ensure complete coverage. He or she will also have the timing down pat so gray hair is covered completely and effectively.

We’re not satisfied until your questions are answered. Medications are powerful, and because of their potential to interact with each other, it is important that we learn to manage them properly. Don’thesitate to call one of our professional pharmacists. They are here to help you with your questions and concerns.

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Exercise for older women Metro Creative Connection The aging process has a way of making people risk-averse. Financial advisors typically recommend that men and women steer clear of risky investments as they age, and men and women over 50 often make lifestyle choices to reduce their risk of developing certain medical conditions. As women age, some may feel exercise is simply too risky. Hormonal changes brought on by aging decrease a woman’s bone density, and that fact makes many women over 50 hesitant to embrace exercise. But exercise plays a key role in helping women over 50 secure their long-term health and reduce their risk of injury. EXERCISE See Page 6

5 Senior Lifestyles • April 2014


Granny Basketball keeps Sue Manning active By Ty Rushing Daily News Senior Staff Writer

For four years, Sue Manning ran up and down the hardwood as a 6 on 6 girls’ basketball player for the Mingo High School Mohawks. When she graduated in 1971, she naturally assumed her playing career was over with and, for the most part, she was right — until she heard about “Granny Basketball.” The Granny Basketball League is where women over the age of 55 play 6 on 6 basketball, with 1920s rules, against other teams to raise money for charity. Sue, who resides in Monroe, plays for the Classic Chassis, who are based out of Southeast Des Moines, and is entering her third season. “I heard about it through my employer, which is the state of Iowa, so I decided to sign-up for it and went to their practice,” Sue said. When Sue attended practice, she had intended to play for her job’s team “The Hot Pink Ladies,” but the roster

was full. She was recruited by the Chassis and has been reliving her days as a Mohawk on the court ever since. “It took me a whole year to learn not to jump doing layup,” Sue said with a laugh. “I had to learn to practice in slow motion — take two dribbles, take a step in a half and put the ball up. That was the biggest thing, and I had to practice on my ‘Granny Basketball Shot,’ which is going underhanded.” Since Sue lives in Monroe, she often practices with the Mustang Grannies in either the PCM High School or middle school gym and has established relationships with those players as well as her own teammates. “The nicest thing is the girls,” Sue said. “They are just wonderful to play with, we have a good team and we work good as a team.” A few of Sue’s teammates commented that “she’s fearless on the court,” and deMANNING See Page 5A

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Senior Lifestyles • April 2014

Exercise Continued from Page 4 • Exercise promotes independence. Some women feel that exercising after 50 increases their risk of injury, which can make them overly dependent on their loved ones. But exercise, in particular strength training, slows bone deterioration, helping bones stay stronger longer and reducing a woman’s risk of suffering a potentially debilitating injury. Independence is especially important to seniors, many of whom spent years planning their retirements and awaiting the day when they would be free to travel at their leisure. Daily exercise can help women maintain that independence by reducing their risk of injury and other ailments that can be confining. • Exercise can improve sleep. Some women who are fighting fatigue may feel that routine exercise will only make them more tired. But exercise actually improves energy levels and makes it easier to get a better night’s rest. Numerous studies have shown that routine exercise can improve sleep quality and even increase energy levels throughout the day, something that should raise an eyebrow among women who do not exercise but routinely find themselves fighting fatigue. A more quality night’s rest improves vitality, making it easier for

women to exercise and make it through the day without feeling fatigued. • Exercise benefits those with limited mobility. Women over 50 with limited mobility may feel that exercise serves no purpose because of their disability or physical condition. But even women confined to wheelchairs or those forced to walk with a cane or walker can benefit from cardiovascular exercise and even light strength training. Such exercises can improve a woman’s range of motion while reducing her risk of heart disease. • It’s never too late to start exercising. Many aging women feel their time to embrace exercise has long since passed. But it’s never too late to start exercising. Women should take a conservative approach when exercising after a long hiatus, beginning with a slow walk around the neighborhood or a local park. Walking is a great beginner’s exercise, as it provides a good cardiovascular workout while working a variety of muscle groups. As your body readjusts to physical activity, gradually increase the intensity of your exercise sessions, adding some strength training, ideally under the supervision of a professional. Always stretch immediately after each exercise session, and give your body ample time to recover, especially when you begin your new regimen.

7 Senior Lifestyles • April 2014


Fred Matthias’ resilient character evident daily By Kate Malott Daily News Staff Writer

Fred Matthias is a man who lives a healthy lifestyle of fitness, diet and a strong well-being. He does more than an average 38-year-old, but at the age of 98, he doesn’t let much deter him from taking care of himself and enjoying life. Fred moved to Newton in 1947, after passing the bar exam in 1939 and working at the Pentagon during WWII. He felt Newton would be a good place to practice law and establish a firm. In his 74 year long career as a local lawyer, Fred walked to his office each day — a mile each way. A member of Kiwanis since 1948, playing “America” on the piano at meetings, and his commitment to his church have made him a leader in the community. He’s also an avid reader, lover of theatre and opera and a sports fan. Fred and his late wife had four children and instilled in them the importance of a healthy diet and regular exercise. One of their sons, Bob, who now lives in Colorado, encouraged his parents to try cross country and downhill skiing. Many years ago, Bob bought Fred

Kate Malott/Daily News Fred Matthias works out on fitness equipment at Park Centre. When the weather is nice, Fred prefers to be outside riding his bike or going on walks.

his first pair of skiis for Christmas, and skiing is one of many activities the Matthias’ enjoy doing. “Fred’s very disciplined about his life. He’s sure to get enough sleep and he is so conscious about his diet,” friend Dot Logan said. “He and his wife really stressed the importance of a healthy lifestyle to their children as well.

The whole family is active.” His family also enjoy biking, traveling, golfing, tennis and sailing. Nowadays, Fred stays busy participating in nine exercise classes a week at Park Centre and riding his three-wheeled bike around Newton and along many trails. His family got him the recumbent bicycle in

2012 to prevent him from falling and protect his safety. In early March, Fred got his bike out for the season and has been riding regularly. “You get to see what’s going on around town or wherever you are. You see the birds, the deer, squirrels and the rabbits scattering around, and on a recumbent bike, which is a very

secure thing, you can gaze around,” he said. Fred’s also an avid lover of the outdoors and enjoys taking journeys along many of Iowa’s scenic bike trails. “Iowa has wonderful bike trails, and they’re all paved, with very small exception,” he said. Most trails average 12 to 30 miles in length and it’s not un-

common for Fred to ride the same distances in the county on an given day. He said the Chichaqua Valley Trail near Baxter is about 40 miles. In 2005, Fred convinced his friend from Park Centre, Dot, not to sell her bike in a garage sale and travel with him. Together, MATTHIAS See Page 8

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Senior Lifestyles • April 2014



Newton Clinic, had a CAT scan done and he Continued from Page 7 was sent to Des Moines Methodist. the two have explored and Fred had excess blood learned about the trails in between his brain and Iowa and states such as the skull bone above it, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Wis- a subdural hemotoma, consin, Minnesota and and he had immediate surgery at Methodist. New York. It hasn’t always been “(The doctors) said smooth sailing for Fred, they would not have however. done this surgery, on Last spring, Fred had even a much younger a dangerous fall and hit person, if they didn’t his head on the piano feel he could tolerate it,” bench in his home. The Dot said. next day, he and Dot “It was because of his went for a walk, but healthy condition they Fred was staggering and did the surgery, and it’s had severe imbalance. so effortless to him. It’s “I didn’t realize howBlack just a natural thing for BlackLogo Logo bad my balance actually him and it paid off.” was,” Fred said. After Fred returned They went to the home, he stayed in the

Continued from Page 5

spite being only 5-foot-2, “she shoot’s over 6-footers.” “This year, I’ve been scoring over 20 points a game — this year has been my good highlight year,” Sue said. While she has been dominant this year, in her first season with the Chassis, Sue won the award for most three-pointers made on the team. “Since I couldn’t do layups, I just shot three-pointers,” Sue Pantone joked. Pantone355 355MM Pantone PantoneReflex Reflex BlueMM As a member of the Chas-Blue sis, Sue plays both forward and guard positions on the court, but prefers playing forward — which is normally a position for taller players. Green Hammer Ribbon 1 Green Hammer Ribbon 1 Playing Granny Basketball keeps Sue active both physically and socially, plus every games proceeds benefit charity. “Getting out of the house and exercise, that’s basically Green GreenHammer HammerRibbon Ribbon2 2 (really beneficial),” Sue said. “Granny Basketball helps with Green Logo Logo not only your exercise life, but The Newton YMCAGreen hosts an it’s a good support group just exercise class for seniors called to get out and be with people. Silver Sneakers from 8:15 to 9 MEDICAL SUPPLY MEDICAL SUPPLY Doing fundraisers is a lot of a.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Green GreenHammer HammerBanner Banner fun.” Silver Sneakers is intended for participants to have fun and Senior staff writer Ty Rushing may be move to music through a variety of exercise designed to increase contacted at (641) 792-3121, ext. 426, MEDICAL MEDICALSUPPLY SUPPLY muscular strength, range of or at

skill rehab unit at Park Centre for four months where he did physical and occupational therapy. In recovery, efficiency and safety were the most important things to remember. Park Centre Lifestyles Director Lori Griffin said her first memory of Fred was on a Senior Health and Fitness Day trip in May. The group went to Lake Red Rock for lunch and a walk, where they had the option of taking different lengthed trails to meet their needs. Fred went a quarter mile with his walker and stopped a few time along the way. In September, the

group went back to Lake Red Rock, but this time Fred did the walk without his walker and choose a trail that was over two miles long. “Just in the few first months, I watched Fred gain his strength back and it was really impressive,” Lori said. “He works vigirously to maintain his independence and he’s a wonderful example of fearlessness and the ability to succeed when challenging yourself,” Griffin said. Staff writer Kate Malott may be contacted at (641) 792-3121, ext. 422, or at

Fitness opportunity at the YMCA


movement and activity for daily living. Hand held weights, elastic tubing with handles and a ball are offered for resistance and a chair is used for support. The course is at an intermediate skill level. The Newton YMCA is located at 1701 S. Eighth Ave. E. in

Newton. The class is free for members and cost $5 for non-members on Tuesdays. The class cost on $1 for non-members on Thursdays because Thursday is Senior Citizen Day at the YMCA. For more information, call (641) 792-4006.

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9 Senior Lifestyles • April 2014


Dog breeds especially compatible with seniors Metro Creative Connection Pets often make ideal companions. They are around when a person needs support, they can provide protection for those living alone, they’re always willing to lend an ear to problems, and many tend to offer unconditional love. Seniors facing an empty nest or the loss of a spouse may find pets can buoy their spirits. Studies have shown that seniors can benefit both mentally and physically from having a pet around. Pets can alleviate anxiety, depression and boredom. While pets can provide comfort and companionship, they remain a significant responsibility. Seniors should find an animal that will fit in with their lifestyles. This is an important consideration for those seniors who travel frequently or have mobility issues. In addition, men and women living in senior communities or assisted living facilities should determine if there are any pet restrictions in place. Those seniors who have decided that a dog will be the best fit can choose among several breeds that may be a good

match for their needs. When selecting a dog, consider both size and temperament. Smaller dogs tend to be easier to handle and will need less maintenance. They are easily carried and won’t take as long to bathe and groom. Smaller dogs also consume less food than larger breeds, reducing the expense of dog food and the hassle of wrangling large, heavy bags of chow. Temperament is also important, as some breeds tend to be more easygoing than others. Larger breeds may be preferable to a smaller breeds, which tend to be hyperactive. However, always remember there are pros and cons to each breed, and each dog will demonstrate his own personality traits. The following are some dogs that can be especially compatible with seniors. • Pug: Equally playful and willing to be a lap dog, the pug requires little exercise and grooming. The breed is typically nonaggressive and submissive. Pugs are good-natured and playful; they don’t often bark and are easy to train. • Shih Tzu: The Shih Tzu lives for attention, but this breed can be dominant and dif-

Submitted Photo The loyalty and intelligence of Schnauzers makes them ideal companions for seniors.

ficult to train. The Shih Tzu will be alert to its surroundings and, despite its small stature, can be a good watchdog. • Pomeranian: Pomeranians look like big balls of fur and can bring a smile to an owner’s face. The breed tends to be perky, can display dominance and can be difficult to train. Because Pomeranians can be dog-aggressive, they may be best as the only pet in the house. • Yorkshire terrier: The Yorkie is a diminutive breed in size only, as they tend to have exu-

berant personalities that dwarf their stature. The ideal lap dog, Yorkies want to lie around and lounge, though some do like to bark. If the fur is kept short in a “puppy cut,” the dog can be easy to maintain. • Pembroke Welsh Corgi: This medium-sized dog hails from Wales and typically requires only moderate exercise and little grooming. They are easy to train and moderately dominant. They don’t bark excessively, and they often get along with other dogs.

• Schnauzer: Available in three sizes, Schnauzers are good companions and protectors. This is an intelligent and loyal breed and will need to be kept amused to stave off boredom. • Brussels Griffon: These dogs do not shed, but they will require professional grooming at least once every 3 months. If socialized early, the Griffon can be a good companion but will likely remain wary of strangers. They are good watchdogs and devoted to their owners.


The YMCA is a proud participant of Silver Sneakers and Silver & Fit programs. Stop by and learn how you can receive a free membership to the Newton YMCA through your insurance company.

Newton YMCA 1701 S. Eighth Ave. E. in Newton (641) 792-4006 •

Comfort Keepers® provides in-home care – such as light housekeeping, meal preparation, personal care services: bathing, feeding, etc. and companionship – to help people maintain quality, independent lives in the comfort of their own homes. Call for more details.

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Senior Lifestyles • April 2014

Cooking for one or two Metro Creative Connection Seniors face many changes as they move into their golden years. Downsizing living spaces and vehicles is common, as is implementing certain changes to improve quality of life. Many seniors also scale back in the kitchen, where some must make changes because of medical conditions. While it seems like reducing food portions would be easy, those used to prepping meals for a large family may find it difficult. The following tips can make meal preparation efficient and

cost-effective. • Divide and store. Supermarkets are increasingly offering larger packages of food products as well as “family size” offerings to compete with warehouse clubs. Buying in bulk can help individuals save money, but it may not always be practical for people living alone or with just a spouse. If you must buy in bulk, invest in a food vacuum sealer or freezer storage bags. Immediately separate meats and poultry into smaller portions before storing them in the freezer. Otherwise, look for bulk items that

are individually wrapped to maintain freshness. Many canned and jarred items can be covered and stored in the refrigerator after containers are opened. • Plan meals with similar ingredients. To reduce food waste, use leftovers to create casseroles or mix them in with new meals. Broiled or grilled chicken can be used to make soups, stirfry dishes, fajitas, and sandwiches. The fewer ingredients you have to buy, the smaller the risk of spoilage. • Cut recipes in half. Recipes can be cut down

depending on how many mouths need to be fed. When baking, cutting back on proportions of ingredients can be challenging. Search online for recipe-scaling programs that can make the work easier. • Cook on the weekend. Use a weekend day

to prepare food and package it into small containers in the refrigerator or freezer. Then the containers can be taken out as needed and heated quickly in the microwave for fast meals. • Organize a mealsharing club. Get together with a few friends

who also have empty nests and split cooking duties. If you’re accustomed to cooking larger portion sizes, do so and then spread the wealth with others in the group. Then sit back and relax when it is your opportunity to have meals delivered to you.



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11 Senior Lifestyles • April 2014





How you want it. Where you want it. When you want it.

200 1st Ave. E. 641-792-3121

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Senior Lifestyles • April 2014

Guess Who Runs Newton Village? Our Tenants... ...All 107 of them. And....More to come this Spring when Continuum Care is completed. Newton Village is devoted to making your life enjoyable. 641-792-0115 110 N. 5th Ave. W., Newton, Iowa


Senior Lifestyles