BEEN THERE, DONE THAT: Bob Gotschalls’ key to longevity may surprise you

Name: Bob Gotschall

Age: 89

Place of birth: Fort Wayne, Indiana

What is your fondest childhood memory? I played basketball and football and really enjoyed that.

Bob Gotschall at the Council on Aging, where he has been coming and volunteering for years. CURRENT PHOTO / LEIGH BLANDER

How long have you lived in Marblehead? About 50 years. We moved here when General Electric transferred me to Lynn. (Gotschall and his wife, Day, moved to Brooksby Village about nine months ago.)

What jobs have you had and what was your favorite? I worked as an engineer for GE for 35 years after starting in their training program. Then I worked for Polaroid for another 30 years.

What is the biggest change you’ve seen in the world? Jet engines. Also, all the craziness going on now with people killing people for no reason. And all the strange weather problems we’re seeing. We heard that climate change would have an impact if we didn’t deal with it. Now it’s dealing with us.

What is your biggest accomplishment? I’d say being a volunteer. My wife and I have volunteered for just about everything you can imagine. We won a Marblehead Chamber of Commerce award for volunteering. We have volunteered at the Council on Aging, the Farmers’ Market and Lifebridge. Also, the Jimmy Fund, Dollars for Scholars, Junior Achivement, the Marblehead YMCA, the Boy Scouts, Symphony by the Sea and the lunch group the Romeos (Retired Old Men Eating Out). I also served as a Crank, winding the clock at Abbot Hall.

What piece of advice do you have for young people today? Get an education. I was one of the first in my family to go to college. Also, volunteer and help people in whatever way you can. When you volunteer, you know you’re helping people, which is a good feeling.

What are your secrets to living a long life? Dewars. And staying active.

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Editor Leigh Blander is an experienced TV, radio and print journalist who has written hundreds of stories for local newspapers, including the Marblehead Reporter.

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