Jake Jacobson is an avid writer, an artist, a computer enthusiast, a good-will ambassador for his retirement community, a fitness buff, and by all accounts, a remarkable man. By the way, Jake, who is a resident of Eastcastle Place senior living community, is 100 years young.
Eastcastle Place is a Life Plan retirement community located on Milwaukee’s eastside, offering independent living, assisted living, memory support, rehabilitation and skilled care.
Jake’s lived in his independent living apartment at Eastcastle Place for nine years, and while the COVID-19 crisis has shaken things up a bit, he is keeping busy, engaged, and feeling safe. Programs and activities at the senior living community have been held virtually, and meals that would typically be served in the dining room are delivered to residents’ doors, all in the interest of keeping the residents safe. Jake is grateful, saying, “It’s challenging, but living here is so much better than being isolated in your own home.” He added, “The staff here are all heroes. They come in every day, leaving the security of their homes and families and working with 200 seniors to provide us with what we need. There are a lot of people who are essential that aren’t officially called that. These people are essential.”
One of Jake’s favorite ways of staying busy is writing. Among other things, he authors a regular item in the Eastcastle Place Connections resident newsletter. “I’m told that I write with a sense of humor. Some people tell me my column is the first thing they read. That’s a good thing for me to hear,” he said.
The fact that Jake is a technology enthusiast, helps with his writing. “I feel like my computer is almost like another person. I go to it every morning and send out emails and do some writing. When I get an idea, I have to pursue it right away. If I get an idea at 2 a.m. I have to get up and write it down. I’m sort of manic. I have to get it finished. That’s my passion now. I’m fortunate to have found a passion at my age, and to be comfortable using technology to accomplish it.” Jake also uses Zoom to stay in contact with his family.
“I do some painting. I’m not quite enough of a painter to sit out on the street and do landscapes. That’d really be cool. I’m not good at original stuff, but if I see something I like, I copy it,” he said.
Jake is physically active and fit. “I guess I’ve been a physical fitness nut all my life. I ran 11 marathons, and then when my knees got bad, I started biking. We took bikes to Europe and Hawaii. That became my main hobby,” Jake said. Because his balance isn’t great, Jake uses an exercise bike every morning “to keep my 100-year old body going.”
Jake said he’s often asked what his secret is for his longevity and good health and replies it’s a secret to him but shares possible explanations. “I’ve always exercised a lot and watched my diet reasonably but I do have a bit of a sweet tooth. I guess it’s genes, diet, exercise and relationships. I had a really satisfying business career, and I’m upbeat. I have a lot of gratitude, and I’ve always been a positive, optimistic guy,” he said. “I’ve always tried to treat people the way that I would like to be treated. It seems in life you find your own kinds of people. You gravitate towards people with whom you’re compatible and share ethics and beliefs.”
Laura Wengler, director of community life of Eastcastle Place said that Jake is a star in the senior living community. “He’s a testament to what aging gracefully can look like. He’s active, engaging, friendly and has a wonderful sense of humor everyone enjoys. Residents of any age look to him as a great role model.”
Eastcastle Place is a Life Plan Community located on Milwaukee’s vibrant East Side. Eastcastle Place offers independent living, promoting an active and engaging lifestyle for seniors. The Health Center at Eastcastle Place offers assisted living, memory support, rehabilitation and skilled nursing services, thus providing complete continuing care for seniors. Eastcastle Place is managed by Life Care Services®. For additional information call 414-219-1398 or visit www.EastcastlePlace.com.