Wichita Man Lives Cheerfully at 106
“No,” he said.
“I was actually hoping the time comes soon. I’ve been here too long already.”
He grins when he says this. But he says the same slightly dark thing often, to staff members at Larksfield Place, the retirement community where he’s lived the last 14 years, and he’s said it with such earnestness that they believe him.
People there, meeting him at first light, see him grin that big grin and call out, whether in jest or in disappointment: “Once again, God didn’t take me.”
He's lonely. And it’s been 14 years since his first and only love passed on.
But if he dies, they will mourn. Spencer Yancey — a widower, farmer’s son, former school teacher, former school basketball coach, former school district superintendent, former insurance salesman, former bank executive, former lieutenant colonel in the U.S. Army Reserve, former glass company sales manager — has become in 14 years one of Larksfield’s more beloved residents.
Larksfield receptionist Ericka Holmes says Yancey could also be named, possibly, the most interesting man in the world.
Consider the evidence:
▪ For three of the past four years at Larksfield, with more than 100 residents and staff members competing, Yancey has won or placed second in the Larksfield Place NCAA college basketball bracket, said Larksfield maintenance man Mike Pickell.
"Spencer Yancey @ 106 yrs. old is AGELESS in our opinion. He is making a difference in the lives of residents and staff at Larksfield Place, Wichita, KS. Thank you Roy Wenzl for taking time to interview Mr. Yancey. He portrays a life rich in meaning and purpose that should be shared. Humble as he can be, Spencer would be the first to say, “Ah, it’s a state of mind and it’s within us all!” We strongly believe Spencer’s quality of life is enriched by his enthusiasm to participate in meaningful activities such as swimming, exercise, bridge and engaging with others and for him it IS the difference between living and just existing." Tammy Flaming, Larksfield Place
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