Bensonhurst resident reaches 106 through exercise

April 12, 2018 Victoria Merlino
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She was born the year the Titanic sank. Now at 106, Bensonhurst resident Goldie Sohn is still going strong. The secret to Sohn’s longevity?

According to her, it’s exercise.

Sohn celebrated her birthday with family, friends and festivities in a party at the Shore Hill Neighborhood Center, 9000 Shore Road, on April 11. The event was led by two programs Sohn is heavily involved with: Seniors in Touch, an adult day program operated by the Family Health Centers at NYU Langone, and New York Road Runners (NYRR), an organization devoted to getting New York City residents up and active across the five boroughs.

Before the party, Sohn attended her weekly workout with NYRR, during which she and other seniors sat in chairs performing exercises with the help of a coach.

Sohn is NYRR’s oldest participant. She has been with the program since 2014 when she was 102, said Rachel Pratt, senior vice president of Youth and Community Services for NYRR. She said 102 was a great age to start moving and getting active. “Any time is a great time to start to get active,” Pratt said.

“At New York Road Runners, we want people to be active for life, and Miss Goldie really exemplifies that. She’s 106 and she’s active and she’s moving,” she said. NYRR gave Sohn New Balance sneakers at the party, symbolizing this.

Sohn loves the environment NYRR and Seniors in Touch provide, and will become upset if she cannot attend their programs, according to her daughter, Marilyn Fisher.

“I love coming here. The people. They’re warm,” said Sohn. “I recommend it very highly.”

Fisher explained in an interview that her mother was born prematurely and underweight, and that it was amazing for her still to be alive at 106, given her beginnings.

“She’s a strong lady. To me, she’s a miracle,” Fisher said.

Kathleen Hopkins, vice president of Community-Based Programs, Family Health Centers at NYU Langone, thanked Sohn for all she has done with Seniors in Touch, and gave Sohn a blanket from the program and NYU Langone. Hopkins started Seniors in Touch in 1988 with the hope that it would be an outlet for seniors to be social and engaged while giving caregivers time for respite. Sohn began with the program in 2014.

“I’m just so thrilled for her,” Fisher said about Sohn as friends gathered to dance and celebrate in her honor. “She loves this place. This is like home to her.”

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