Meet Kathryn Kay Hodges. At 97 years young she is a Public Health Nurse for the borough of Emerson in New Jersey (has been since 1967) and the state’s oldest licensed registered nurse. Armed with three quarters of a century’s worth of experience and knowledge, Kay, who finished nursing school in 1941, still spends her days dedicated to providing health screenings, education and prevention to the people in her community, and has no plans of quitting.

“I want to leave this Earth with my boots on. I want to keep working. It’s the love of my life, other than my husband, who was a great guy.”

A role model for staying active, when she’s not working Kay “tools around in a 25-year-old Buick Roadmaster wagon with oxidized paint and a GRAMPIE vanity plate.” She also makes time to participate in civic duties. “Last Nov. 8, her 55th general election, she rose before sunrise and put in a 15-hour day as the judge at her district’s polling place.”

According to, Kay and others over 90 are “the fastest-growing segment of the population. By 2050, 10 percent of all senior citizens will be either a nonagenarian or a centenarian, the Census Bureau forecasts.”