Gwen Found: One centenarian's journey of adventure, achievement, and joyful longevity

Gwen Found's journey through over a century highlights the power of an active lifestyle, a fulfilling career, and the joy of embracing every moment. Residing at the Aspira Waterford Barrie community in Barrie, Ontario, Gwen, 100, reflected on her vibrant life with a blend of wisdom, gratitude, and humour. Her experiences, from the sports fields of Toronto to her corporate career and beyond into the adventures of retirement, tell a tale that is both inspiring and instructive.

IMG_0542Early ambitions and being a career woman
Born into a family where sports were a way of life and being active was second nature, Gwen's early life in Toronto set the stage for a century of living fully. "I was very interested in sports, I played everything, and I was a member of the Weston Golf Club for 60 years," Gwen reminisced, illustrating her passion for activity.
Despite her initial dreams of a career in dietetics, economic realities steered her toward the business world. Gwen's entry into the workforce was not just a job but the beginning of a remarkable work life. Gwen's career at A.B. Dick Company in Toronto spanned over four decades, a period during which she rose through the ranks to play a pivotal role in the company's expansion. Her work was not just a means to an end but a fulfilling part of her life. Reflecting on her time at A.B. Dick Company, Gwen proudly stated, "I was a career woman. I worked for the same man for 32 years," highlighting the blend of loyalty and professionalism that characterized her career there.

Marriage at 60, adventure and building a house at 65
The chapter of Gwen's life that began with her marriage to Bud Found (pictured below) is filled with tales of love, adventure, and shared entrepreneurial spirit. "I married for the first time at 60 to the entrepreneur Bud Found of Found Aviation. We travelled all of our married life," she shared. Together, they embarked on numerous adventures, from building a house with their own hands in Gravenhurst, Ontario at 65 years old, to traveling across continents, demonstrating that for Gwen, life after retirement was as vibrant as ever.

IMG_0541Their partnership was not only personal but also professional. Gwen worked alongside Bud in his ventures, taking on roles that challenged and fulfilled her. "I never worked so hard in my life until I married Bud," she recalled with a laugh. "Every time he opened a new company I had to take care of hiring and work with him until it got going."

Embracing the Golden Years
Transitioning to life in a retirement community after Bud's passing was initially challenging, but for Gwen, it was another chapter she embraced. "The breakfasts are delicious, and I love this place. I love the building, the staff, and my apartment upstairs. I love my life here," she expressed, her appreciation for the Barrie residence shining through. While she isn’t fond of all the food at Waterford Barrie, her active participation in the community's life, from games to social gatherings, echoes her lifelong belief in staying engaged and active.

When pondering the secret to her long and fulfilling life, Gwen's formula is straightforward yet profound. "Good health. I was always dedicated to sports, I was active all my life. And as my nephew would say, the martinis," she says, with a mischievous sparkle in her eye. Her approach combines physical activity, a zest for life, and the occasional indulgence, a balance that has served her well.

A great example of active living
For those contemplating the move to retirement living or wondering how to maintain vitality in their later years, Gwen's story serves as a powerful guide. "I've been very happy here. I would recommend it to others. The PSWs and staff are marvelous," she said, underscoring the importance of community and support when it comes to making the most of retirement living.

Gwen 1 FINALAt 100, Gwen Found is more than just an example of longevity; she embodies a philosophy of life that champions activity, engagement, and the pursuit of happiness, no matter the age. Her life is a blueprint for aging with grace, embracing each new day with enthusiasm, and finding joy in every moment. Gwen's narrative, rich with her own reflections, should inspire anyone looking to lead a fulfilling and vibrant life well into old age.

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