101-year-old Chattanoogan defies the odds, exercises every day - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

101-year-old Chattanoogan defies the odds, exercises every day

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A local 101-year-old woman invited Channel 3 along for her hour-long morning exercise with friends Tuesday morning.

Leta Tolbert walks for an hour inside a church she helped build more than 60 years ago. Now, she's 101 and still walking. For the past several years, Leta, her cousin and sister-in-law walk up and down the aisles at their Brooks Memorial United Methodist Church.

"I like to walk. I just feel it's good for my body. I could sit there in that chair all day long and just grunt and I wouldn't be able to walk a step," she said.

By talking with Leta, you wouldn't know she's been around more than a century. The sharp-witted great-grandmother radiates youthful pride.

Leta was born and raised in the Tennessee Valley. She graduated in 1930 from Spring City High School before working at Dixie Yarn for 25 cents an hour. It was the only place she ever worked. At age 65, she retired from Dixie Yarn and started walking.

Leta said she never dreamed of living to be 101 but credits her success with longevity to healthy eating and exercise.

She also advices young people to work hard always tell the truth.

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