March 23, 2012

USA: Great-great grandmother, 101, breaks paragliding record

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah / Reuters / Oddly Enough / March 22, 2012

By James Nelson



Photo courtesy: newsmakerstoday.com
A great-great grandmother in America was declared the oldest woman to paraglide tandem on Tuesday after taking to the air to celebrate her 101st birthday.

In confirming the feat, Guinness World Records said Mary Allen Hardison's historic flight near Salt Lake City on September 1 last year was "pushing record breaking to new heights."

Hardison, of Ogden, Utah, said she decided to go paragliding after her 75-year-old son Allen took up the sport.

"Just because you are old doesn't mean you have to sit on your duff all day," Hardison told Reuters.

Hardison's flight was cheered on by her great-grandchildren, who have witnessed other such birthday adventures: On her 90th birthday, Hardison rode all the adult rides at Disneyland, and for her next she plans test out a mountain slide in Utah.

She invited other centenarians to break her new record.

"I heard of one fellow that hadn't walked for quite a while and he decided when he heard about me he would walk again. So he got up and started walking again," she said.

"He said if she can do that, I can do this. If I can inspire some of the older people to get up and do something it's well worth it."

(Editing by Mary Slosson, Cynthia Johnston and David Brunnstrom)

Thomson Reuters

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