AKRON, Ohio — A great-grandmother of 18 is the oldest volunteer at Akron Children’s Hospital.
Rose Carlson is 102 years young. She was 95 when she joined her daughter as a volunteer at the hospital. She said she didn’t want to sit around and watch bad TV after her husband’s death, so she decided to volunteer.
From folding and checking blankets for kids to preparing packets for families coming to the hospital, Rose is quite busy on the days she works.
“That’s why I come because I like the people; I don’t like the work,” she laughed as she told us.
Her daughter, Linda, says her mom has always volunteered. Rose was a big part of the PTA when Linda and her siblings were small and has volunteered with United Cerebral Palsy, Toys for Tots, and The Salvation Army.
In fact, Rose was with them for 50 years and just stopped ringing a bell at Christmas two years ago.
Linda says her mom has always been an inspiration because nothing stops her. “She has a fierce determination. That’s for sure — in whatever it is.”
Rose says she’s worked hard all her life to take care of her family and to make her community a better place.
She’s raised four children, nine grandchildren and has 18 great-grandchildren.
Being busy, she says, is one of the things that she feels has kept her young; that and being willing to make new friends and be a part of something.
And, a good dose of praying, she says, doesn’t hurt either. ‘Why you think you made it to 102?’ “The man upstairs,” she laughed. “I don’t know why I got that old; nobody else in the family got that old. I’m the oldest one. I must have lived a good life,” Rose told us.
Rose says she will continue to volunteer at the hospital as long as she is able.