Archive for the ‘Aging with Grace and Dignity’ category

Harold Hayslett: An artist behind beautiful music

December 14, 2007

By Kate Long 

On Sunday (12/16/07), 18 of West Virginia’s finest musicians will gather at the state Cultural Center in Charleston to perform on instruments made by one man: 90-year-old Harold Hayslett of South Charleston.

Kate Long brings us a behind-the-scenes look at this unassuming artist. She produced this story as part of our Aging With Grace and Dignity series.


A conversation with Bill Withers

December 12, 2007


By Anna Sale  

At 69, Bill Withers proudly points out that he’s the youngest member of the West Virginia Music Hall of Fame.  Withers was born in Slab Fork in Raleigh County, the youngest of six children. His father, a coal miner, died when Withers was 12. He was raised by his mother and grandmother, and then entered the Navy after high school. That’s when Withers started writing and recording.  

His hits include “Ain’t No Sunshine,” “Just the Two of Us,” and “Lean On Me.” Anna Sale spoke to Withers about growing up in West Virginia as an African American in the era of segregation. Below are radio and television versions of the interview. 

A conversation with Little Jimmy Dickens

December 6, 2007

By Suzanne Higgins 
Little Jimmy Dickens was born and raised in Raleigh County. At 87, he’s the oldest living member of the Grand Ole Opry. Dickens is known for his rhinestone suits, 10-gallon hats and novelty songs like “May the Bird of Paradise Fly Up Your Nose.” But there’s a serious side to Dickens, as Suzanne Higgins found out in this interview.

West Virginians in WWII: Milt Cohen

August 10, 2007

By Suzanne Higgins 

Centenarian Milt Cohen is a well known engineer, attorney and civic activist in Morgantown. He’s proud of his Jewish heritage. Cohen describes his childhood, his extensive education, how racism impacted his early life, and his enlisting for active duty – at age 39.  Part of our series, Aging with Grace & Dignity.

Wife’s battle with Alzheimer’s spurs book

August 7, 2007

By Cecelia Mason 

When writer Frank Fuerst’s wife, June, was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease 21 years ago, Fuerst had difficulty finding information on how to take care of her. Now Fuerst has written a book, called “Alzheimer’s Care with Dignity,” that he hopes will help others care for relatives with dementia. Cecelia Mason recently spoke to Fuerst and filed this report as part of our series “Aging With Grace and Dignity.”

Living with Alzheimer’s

July 5, 2007

By Kristin Murdock
Alzheimer’s disease researchers predict cases will quadruple by 2050 to more than 100 million – or 1 in 85 people will have the disease worldwide. These estimates were released this month at the Alzheimer’s Association International Conference on Prevention of Dementia in Washington, D.C.

The baby boomer generation is caring for their aging parents, while finding they are also being diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. That’s the case for a Nitro, West Virginia couple; Brenda and Kenneth Haydon. Brenda takes care of her husband and her mother. They were recently featured in Newsweek for their struggle with Alzheimer’s.

Kristin Murdock sat down with The Haydons and brings us their story. She produced this story as part of our series, Aging with Grace and Dignity.

Life on Wheels

June 27, 2007

By Cecelia Mason

The Recreational Vehicle Industry Association estimates about one million people in the U.S. live full-time in RVs. West Virginia native Dick Strader has joined the ranks of those who have traded their traditional home for one on the open road. This story was produced as part of our series Aging with Grace and Dignity.