Local Humana honorees are on top of their game at Florida Senior Games – Tampabay.com
Instead of the old adage “move it or lose it,” approximately 2,000 amateur athletes 50 and older celebrated “move it and win it” during the Florida Senior Games, which ended Sunday in Clearwater.
They competed in five-year age brackets in a range of sports, from table tennis to pickleball, from track and field to shuffleboard.
As one of the principal presenters of the games, along with the Florida Sports Foundation, Humana designated four competitors as Humana Game Changers. Before the competition began, LifeTimes talked with two of the honored athletes about their commitment to these games.
Leurene Hildenbrand, 85, is one of this year’s Game Changers. She is a retired scientist from Akron, Ohio, who spends half the year in Pinellas Park. Harry Carothers, 74, also of Pinellas Park, was selected in 2015. He retired 15 years ago from the Air Force.
Have you always been active in sports?
Hildenbrand: No. I was always active, but not in sports. They didn’t have sports when I was a youngster like they have nowadays. Women had no intramural sports at all. My husband played table tennis in the basement with friends. It was all guys. When we got to Florida, I had more time on my hands and saw in the paper they were playing table tennis in senior games.
Carothers: All my life. My hobby in my retirement has been playing basketball. I played basketball in high school. My dad was always out there (in the backyard) shooting. Kind of a family thing. In the U.S. Air Force, I did a lot of running or conditioning and baseball. A typical workout would be go to the gym at lunchtime, run 2-3 miles, play full-court basketball till end of break.
How did you get started in the Florida Senior