Over the course of nearly 40 years, one home in Southport became known as a neighborhood food bank.
Strawberries, rhubarb and asparagus grew in patches in the family’s garden. Gale Stohler tended beans, cabbage and other vegetables.
A small orchard with eight apple trees provided fruit through late summer into fall. Apples, stored in the cellar, could last through the winter so they had access year-round.
That constant access to fresh food may have something to do with Stohler’s longevity. He turned 100 on Dec. 19, celebrating the occasion with his sons that evening. A large party for friends and extended family was a few days later.
Throughout his life, Stohler traveled through the entire continental U.S., Europe and other foreign countries. He served in World War II, worked for the Internal Revenue Service and loved to square-dance with his wife, Lucille.
Stohler can’t pinpoint what has helped him live to be 100, but he suspects it was clean living. The Stohlers were ahead of their time in regards to nutrition. They avoided too much red meat and regularly ate fresh fruits and vegetables.