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Man turns 100, refuses to 'give up,' works out at YMCA every day

Les Savino celebrated his 100th birthday in August. He spends three hours working out at the Hanover YMCA five mornings a week.

HANOVER, Pa. — The Hanover YMCA helped one of its longtime members celebrate a special milestone in late August: his 100th birthday.

Les Savino has been a patron of the fitness club since 1983. He drives himself over from his retirement home five days a week to exercise for three hours.

“Most people, when they get older, give up,” Savino said. “You know, it’s an effort to come in here every morning. An effort to go through that, those machines take a lot of effort and people don’t want to extend that effort. They just wanna sit in their chair and watch television. So I come in here and spend three hours here every morning.”

The fitness fanatic's weight has not changed in 35 years.

Savino follows a strict five-day regime. He lifts weights Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. Tuesdays and Thursdays are dedicated to aerobic exercises.

The dedicated gym-goer walks the treadmill for two miles and rides the stationary bike for eight miles.

"I used to joke that he worked out harder than my 20-year-old sons,” Gary McClure, a retired employee of the YMCA said. “They’d just shake their head at that and say 'hey!' But you gotta see it to believe it.”

Savino is no stranger to hard work. 

In World War Ⅱ, he taught pilots how to fly B-17 Flying Fortresses. He continued to fly planes privately after the war.

When he was a young boy, he delivered papers to former president Calvin Coolidge. He also met Charles Lindbergh after he flew across the Atlantic, as well as the mechanic that taught Amelia Earhart the engineering of planes.

Life eventually led Savino to Hanover, where he worked in the food industry and ended his career consulting. 

Like the gym, Savino did not give up his profession easily—he refused to retire until he was in his 80s.

The employees at the YMCA have enjoyed getting to know him over the last 39 years, and look forward to many more.

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