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Mar 6, 2020

Hoosiers who have celebrated more than 90 birthdays have lived through a lot of state history. Not only have they been eyewitnesses to the great milestones of the 20th century, many have remained hale and hearty far beyond the average American lifespan. Those who continue to enjoy an active life into their tenth decade undoubtedly have insights and advice to share with the rest of us.

Georgia Buchanan and son Bryan Hadin are pictured at teh Dead Sea c. 2006. Proviced by John Sherman.To tap these insights - including what expectations to let go of and how to keep thriving mentally and physically - the format for this show is a round-table discussion with two guests in their 90s.  

The guests, their ages when the show was originally broadcast in March of 2018, and their backgrounds are as follows:

  • Indianapolis civic leader Georgia Buchanan, 91, the author of the book How to Live Beyond 90 without Falling Down (IBJ Book Publishing). The daughter of Greek immigrants who came to Indy during the 1920s, Georgia has long been active in Special Olympics and other non-profit organizations. She also was a guest on Hoosier History Live shows in July 2012 about the history of Special Olympics in Indiana and in August 2009 about Greek heritage in the state.
  • And Tom Ridley, 95, who grew up near Indiana Avenue in Indianapolis. In 1927, when he was five years old, his parents brought him to opening events at what is now the Madam Walker Legacy Center. Mr. Ridley continues to be the historian and a guide at the Walker Theatre; he was our guest in 2016 to describe his memories about the early years of the theater and the heyday of the local jazz scene. He also talked about his World War II experiences, which included serving in an all-black military unit that landed on Utah Beach on D-Day in 1944.

Tom Ridley.During this show, our guests share life lessons and a range of tips about how to flourish after age 90, a demographic that is growing rapidly. According to Georgia's book, the number of Americans aged 90 and older has tripled in the past 30 years.

Georgia Buchanan's son, Bryan Hadin, was born in 1963 with special needs. For many years, he participated in various competitions with Special Olympics. Georgia is also a long-time arts advocate; her career as a print and broadcast journalist included media work in Indianapolis and in Washington D.C.

Our guest Tom Ridley, who was born in 1922, lives in the Ransom Place neighborhood, not far from where he grew up. He met his late wife when they were in kindergarten; she went on to become an IPS teacher. His father-in-law was a musician in clubs on Indiana Avenue.

Contrary to prevailing stereotypes about the elderly, our guests are active on the Internet, continue to drive and live independently. Both are widely known for their energy and enthusiasm.