Peekskill Herald

Peekskill Herald

Peekskill Herald

Resolutions for the Young at Heart

Drum+Hill+centenarian+resident+Diane+%28Dee%29+Volz+runs+the+book+club+at+Peekskills+Senior+Citizen+Club.+
Drum Hill centenarian resident Diane (Dee) Volz runs the book club at Peekskill’s Senior Citizen Club.

“See more of the world.”

 “Go skydiving.”

“Make a difference.”

These New Year’s resolutions don’t seem at all surprising until you learn who is making them–centenarians. That’s right, people who are 100-years-old–and older!

You can see–and may have already seen–eight centenarians making these resolutions and more (“I want to get a new bachelor pad!”) in Northwell Health’s “Resolutions” advertising campaign. The 30-second commercial has been airing on ABC, CBS, and News 12, among others, since mid-December.

There have also been print ads in the New York Times and Newsday. All of the featured centenarians in this ad campaign for New York’s largest health care provider are New Yorkers, but two are from Peekskill and live at Drum Hill on Ringgold Street.

Diane Volz, 101, is one of our local centenarians. Her resolution to see more of the world fits perfectly with her belief that “you should continue to always learn, even at 100 years old.” The retired English teacher attributes her longevity to a number of things, including always keeping a positive attitude.

Diane (Dee) Volz was featured in this full page advertisement in the New York Times on December 26.

In the commercial, Margaret said she wants to ‘make a difference.’ And she’s seen laughing after hearing Izzy says his resolution is to sleep a little later. Diane does a shimmy in her chair after hearing another centenarian say she wants to do more of the Electric Slide dance move.

Northwell Health’s chief of geriatrics and palliative medicine, Dr. Maria Carney, echoes the benefits of a positive attitude. She has noticed that the centenarians she treats have several things in common, including “healthy living, supportive social networks, and a good attitude of gratitude.”

Dr. Cathryn Devons makes primary care visits to Diane and Margaret at their homes at Drum Hill. The chief of geriatrics at Phelps Hospital has noticed a number of things these women have in common that have contributed to their longevity.

“Margaret and Diane remain active and engaged in their community,” Dr. Devons said. “Margaret runs the residents’ counsel; Diane is involved in the book club. They both are interested in world events.”

Margaret Vaccaro still makes a difference. She’s been assisting the administration at Drum Hill for ten years in making resident handbooks and helping in many other ways.

The inspiring ad campaign will run through the middle of January.

“We wanted to spread a message of goodwill this holiday season,” said Joe Leston, Deputy Chief Marketing Officer at Northwell. “We have a unique responsibility in health care to support people in living the longest, fullest lives they can–to help give those we serve the opportunity to make another resolution year after year after year.”

There are more than 332 million people living in the United States, and fewer than 90,000 of them are centenarians.

These centenarians have inspired me to make another resolution of my own. I am going to do my best to live like Diane and Margaret–and all of the other centenarians out there–so that I can continue to make New Year’s resolutions until I am 100 years old, maybe older.

About the Contributor
Jeannette Sanderson has been writing and telling stories since she was a child. The author and her husband moved to Peekskill more than 30 years ago and raised their children here. Jeannette loves Peekskill and delights in meeting and writing about the people who make this city special for the Peekskill Herald.