Iolan, 105, lives life ‘her way’

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November 24, 2012 - 12:00 AM

The oldest person in recorded history was Jeanne Calment, 122, of France. Iolan Hazel Moorhead, at almost 106, might not be in the Guinness Book of World Records but she is making her own history in Allen County.
Moorhead’s family thinks she might be the oldest person in all of Allen County.
Moorhead was born Nov. 29, 1906. She was born on a farm and grew up helping her dad farm, milk cows and skin mules.
“She could skin four mules as good as anyone,” Moorhead’s nephew, Dale Mast said of getting a team outfitted.
Hazel was second of eight children and was born to Clarence and Mabel “Gangloff” Beer.
Hazel went on to work at a variety of different jobs, one being as a drycleaner in Topeka.
She married later in life and didn’t have children of her own, but her nephew and his wife Beulah might as well be her own.
The Masts are her closest relatives and visit her twice a week, though they live 65 miles away.
Beulah is the only person allowed to do Hazel’s hair, per Hazel’s request, and until she was in her 90s she would go visit the Masts and help Beulah can peaches.
When it was time for Moorhead to give up driving, no one forced her; she quit on her own, Dale said.
Hazel and her husband, Arthur “Doc” Moorhead, moved to Iola roughly 30 years ago and Hazel has stayed in that home ever since. Doc has since passed away.
Moorhead is known for her love of fresh flowers, farming, pumpkin pie and canning.
Since Moorhead turned 105 she has received five letters from President Barack Obama and one from former president Bill Clinton.
The letters sit in a china cabinet and another letter should be on its way in the mail, in time for her birthday.
Hazel doesn’t have a secret as how to make it to 106. She lived her life her way, and as Dale says “she says there are two ways to do something, her way and the wrong way.”
The Masts are requesting cards to be sent to 5 Holiday Ct., Iola.

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