Hadley Martin celebrates 103rd birthday

LAKE COUNTY — A gala party was held Jan. 4, at Grand Oaks Nursing Center as Hadley Martin, one of the residents there, celebrated his 103rd birthday. This very senior citizen appeared to enjoy the festivities thoroughly and was particularly pleased and surprised by the dozens of cards which had arrived from local well-wishers.

“I didn’t know I had so many friends!” Martin exclaimed.

When asked how it felt to be over the century mark, the energetic birthday celebrate quickly retorted, “I’m not through yet!” As for his personal secrets for longevity, he advised “Eat lots of pepper!”

More unusual still, Martin confided that he invented his own special system -- a contraption which administers a mild electric shock. He swears that this daily stimulus adds years to one’s life.

Everyone who knows Martin observes that he has always had a zest for life and a spirit of fun. He drove a car until he was 98 years old — at which time the Sheriff’s department took it away from him for his own safety — “but he kept going back to the Sheriff’s department after that, trying to convince them to give it back!” reports nursing home administrator Sharon Wing. “He said he had places he wanted to go.”

Many Baldwin residents have fond memories of seeing Hadley Martin walking up and down Michigan Avenue for exercise or to go to the library. He is still in generally good health and loves to receive visitors.