Category Archives: Role Models

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Real or Fake: Rose the 87-Year Old College Student

The article below is not my own creation and is taken from here.  This seems to be going around on the web again, especially on social networks.  The actual lady shown in the post is not the actual Rose, but a lady by the name of Nola Ochs who was 95 years old at the time she went to college.

A story about an 87-year old college student named Rose is a touching story about life, fulfilling dreams, and growing old. But is the story real or fake?

It’s probably fiction.

We can neither confirm nor debunk the actual story, though it does read more like a modern fable than a true historic event. The story entitled “Never Too Old to Live Your Dream” was written by Dan Clark and published in the 1999 book entitled, “Chicken Soup for the College Soul: Inspiring and Humorous Stories About College,” and re-published in several later Chicken Soup books. This book contains stories, poems, and inspirational tales, and the Rose story certainly reads as an inspirational work of fiction. But again, we can’t completely say either way.

The Photo: Nola Ochs
The image circulated with the “Rose” story is actually a snapshot of Nola Ochs, who in 2007 became the Guiness record holder as the world’s oldest college graduate at the age of 95. Her story is a real-life inspiration. She graduated from Fort Hays State University with a general studies degree with an emphasis in history back in 2007 at the age of 95. She graduated with her 21-year old granddaughter, Alexandra Ochs. Nola went on to earn her master’s in 2010 at the age of 98.

The Story
Here’s the story of Rose, the 87-year old college student, as passed around social media in 2013.

An 87 Year Old College Student Named Rose

The first day of school our professor introduced himself and challenged us to get to know someone we didn’t already know.

I stood up to look around when a gentle hand touched my shoulder. I turned round to find a wrinkled, little old lady beaming up at me with a smile that lit up her entire being.

She said, “Hi handsome. My name is Rose. I’m eighty-seven years old. Can I give you a hug?”

I laughed and enthusiastically responded, “Of course you may!” and she gave me a giant squeeze.

“Why are you in college at such a young, innocent age?” I asked.

She jokingly replied, “I’m here to meet a rich husband, get married, and have a couple of kids…”

“No seriously,” I asked. I was curious what may have motivated her to be taking on this challenge at her age.

“I always dreamed of having a college education and now I’m getting one!” she told me.

After class we walked to the student union building and shared a chocolate milkshake.We became instant friends. Every day for the  next three months, we would leave class together and talk nonstop. I was always mesmerized listening to this “time machine” as she shared her wisdom and experience with me.

Over the course of the year, Rose became a campus icon and she easily made friends wherever she went. She loved to dress up and she reveled in the attention bestowed upon her from the other students. She was living it up.

At the end of the semester we invited Rose to speak at our football banquet. I’ll never forget what she taught us. She was introduced and stepped up to the podium.

As she began to deliver her prepared speech, she dropped her three by five cards on the floor. Frustrated and a little embarrassed she leaned into the microphone and simply said, “I’m sorry I’m so jittery. I gave up beer for Lent and this whiskey is killing me! I’ll never get my speech back in order so let me just tell
you what I know.”

As we laughed she cleared her throat and began, “We do not stop playing because we are old; we grow old because we stop playing. There are only four secrets to staying young, being happy, and achieving success. You have to laugh and find humor every day.

You’ve got to have a dream. When you lose your dreams, you die.

We have so many people walking around who are dead and don’t even know it!There is a huge difference between growing older and growing up.

If you are nineteen years old and lie in bed for one full year and don’t do one productive thing, you will turn twenty years old.

If I am eighty-seven years old and stay in bed for a year and never do anything I will turn eighty-eight.

Anybody can grow older. That doesn’t take any talent or ability. The idea is to grow up by always finding opportunity in change.

Have no regrets.

The elderly usually don’t have regrets for what we did, but rather for things we did not do. The only people who fear death are those with regrets.”

She concluded her speech by courageously singing “The Rose.”

She challenged each of us to study the lyrics and live them out in our daily lives.

At the year’s end Rose finished the college degree she had begun all those years ago. One week after graduation Rose died  peacefully in her sleep.

Over two thousand college students attended her funeral in tribute to the wonderful woman who taught by example that it’s never too late to be all you can possibly be .When you finish reading this, please send this peaceful word of advice to your friends and family, they’ll really enjoy it!

These words have been passed along in loving memory of ROSE.

REMEMBER, GROWING OLDER IS MANDATORY. GROWING UP IS  OPTIONAL.

We make a Living by what we get, We make a Life by what we give.

Bottom Line
We believe the story is an inspirational work of fiction. What do you think?

A heart touching poem

This poem talks about the dangers of drunk driving.  Read it slowly, and I’m sure it’ll bring a tear to your eye.

I went to a party Mom,
I remembered what you said.
You told me not to drink, Mom,
So I drank soda instead.

I really felt proud inside, Mom,
The way you said I would.
I didn’t drink and drive, Mom,
Even though the others said I should.

I know I did the right thing, Mom,
I know you are always right.
Now the party is finally ending, Mom,
As everyone is driving out of sight.

As I got into my car, Mom,
I knew I’d get home in one piece.
Because of the way you raised me,
So responsible and sweet.

I started to drive away, Mom,
But as I pulled out into the road,
The other car didn’t see me, Mom,
And hit me like a load.

As I lay there on the pavement, Mom,
I hear the policeman say,
“The other guy is drunk,” Mom,
And now I’m the one who will pay.

I’m lying here dying, Mom….
I wish you’d get here soon.
How could this happen to me, Mom?
My life just burst like a balloon.

There is blood all around me, Mom,
And most of it is mine.
I hear the medic say, Mom,
I’ll die in a short time.

I just wanted to tell you, Mom,
I swear I didn’t drink.
It was the others, Mom.
The others didn’t think.

He was probably at the same party as I.
The only difference is, he drank
And I will die.

Why do people drink, Mom?
It can ruin your whole life.
I’m feeling sharp pains now.
Pains just like a knife.

The guy who hit me is walking, Mom,
And I don’t think it’s fair.
I’m lying here dying
And all he can do is stare.

Tell my brother not to cry, Mom.
Tell Daddy to be brave.|
And when I go to heaven, Mom,
Put “Daddy’s Girl” on my grave.

Someone should have told him, Mom,
Not to drink and drive.
If only they had told him, Mom,
I would still be alive.

My breath is getting shorter, Mom.
I’m becoming very scared.
Please don’t cry for me, Mom.
When I needed you, you were always there.

I have one last question, Mom.
Before I say good bye.
I didn’t drink and drive,
So why am I the one to die?

Author Unknown

The spirit of friendship

Horror gripped the heart of a World War-I soldier, as he saw his lifelong friend fall in battle. The soldier asked his Lieutenant if he could go out to bring his fallen comrade back.

‘You can go,’ said the Lieutenant, ‘but don’t think it will be worth it . Your friend is probably dead and you may throw your life away.’

The Lieutenant’s words didn’t matter, and the soldier went anyway. Miraculously, he managed to reach his friend, hoisted him onto his shoulder and brought him back to their company’s trench.

The officer checked the wounded soldier, then looked kindly at his friend.

‘I told you it wouldn’t be worth it,’ he said. ‘Your friend is dead and you are mortally wounded.’

‘It was worth it, Sir,’ said the soldier.

‘What do you mean by worth it?’ responded the Lieutenant.’Your friend is dead.’

‘Yes Sir,’ the soldier answered, ‘but it was worth it because when I got to him, he was still alive and I had the satisfaction of hearing him say……. ‘

‘ Man…I knew you would come ! ‘

Kindness Pays

One day, a poor boy who was selling goods from door to door to pay his way through school, found he had only one thin dime left, and he was hungry.

He decided he would ask for a meal at the next house. However, he lost his nerve when a lovely young woman opened the door. Instead of a meal he asked for a drink of water. She thought he looked hungry so brought him a large glass of milk. He drank it slowly, and then asked, “How much do I owe you?”

“You don’t owe me anything,” she replied “Mother has taught us never to accept payment for a kindness.” He said… “Then I thank you from my heart.”

As Howard Kelly left that house, he not only felt stronger physically, but his faith in God and man was strong also. He had been ready to give up and quit.

Years later that young woman became critically ill. The local doctors were baffled. They finally sent her to the big city, where they called in specialists to study her rare disease. Dr. Howard Kelly was called in for the consultation. When he heard the name of the town she came from, a strange light filled his eyes. Immediately he rose and went down the hall of the hospital to her room. Dressed in his doctor’s gown he went in to see her. He recognized her at once. He went back to the consultation room determined to do his best to save her life. From that day he gave special attention to the case.

After a long struggle, the battle was won. Dr. Kelly requested the business office to pass the final bill to him for approval. He looked at it, then wrote something on the edge and the bill was sent to her room.

She feared to open it, for she was sure it would take the rest of her life to pay for it all. Finally, she looked, and something caught her attention on the side as She read these words…..

“Paid in full with one glass of milk.” (Signed) Dr. Howard Kelly.

Tears of joy flooded her eyes as her happy heart prayed: “Thank You, GOD, that Your love has spread abroad through human hearts and hands.”

Author Unknown

Mahatma Gandhi’s Shoes

Whatever situation may befall you, it doesn’t hurt to think about others

As Mahatma Gandhi stepped aboard a train one day, One of his shoes slipped Off and landed on the track. He was unable to retrieve it as the train was Moving.

To the amazement of his companions, Gandhi calmly took off his other shoe And threw it back along the track to land close to the first. Asked by a fellow passenger why he did so, Gandhi smiled.

“The poor man who finds the shoes lying on the track,” He replied, “will now have a pair he can use.”