Hawaii Tops Longevity Study

Jack Russell
Jack Russell
Marge and Jack Russell
Marge and Jack Russell

by Kristine Uyeno

HONOLULU (KHNL) - When it comes to living a long life, Hawaii is the place to be.

A new study shows local residents, on average, live longer than anyone else in the country.

Jack Russell, who will be celebrating his 96th birthday on Saturday, says staying physically and mentally active helps him.

He shoots pool with his buddies, four times a week.

"Walking, now I'm down to about a mile," said Russell.

He also credits his wife Marge, for keeping him on his toes. She's 90 years young.

"Save my life, I don't know what I'd do without him," she said.

More and more people in Hawaii are living longer lives. Local residents live on average, 80 years. While the Aloha State topped the longevity list, Washington, D.C. came in at the bottom with people there living an average of 72 years.

"We used to be able to get a full meal for 35 cents," said the retired lawyer.

"Milk 10 cents a quart, bread 15 cents a loaf," said his wife.

But she isn't sure what her longevity secrets are.

"I guess I'm just plain lucky," she said.

She doesn't exercise and has a cocktail every night. But this great grandmother of three, still drives and tries to stay active in other ways. The Russells, who have been married for 68 years, say aging gracefully is a plus, but aging happily is the key.

"Oh yes, I wouldn't change anything," she said. "I'd do it all over again."