100-year-old Mich. man to compete in Meijer State Games

Fred Winter of Holland will compete in the Meijer State Games of Michigan this weekend.

KENTWOOD, Mich. (WOOD) — When Fred Winter of Holland tried to sign up for this week’s Meijer State Games of Michigan, he ran into a little road block: The age brackets on the registration form ended at 99, and that number was not high enough.

Winter is 100 years old. He’s a U.S. Navy veteran who was aboard a ship at the Battle of Okinawa during World War II 70 years ago.

After he realized the registration form didn’t include an option for his age, he contacted the organizers at the West Michigan Sports Commission and asked for help. They obliged.

Winter can now compete in the Meijer State Games. On Saturday at East Kentwood High School Stadium, he’ll throw the shot put, the javelin and the discus, and run the 50- and 100-yard dashes.

He said he started competing in the Senior Olympics at the ripe age of 70.

“To keep in shape,” he explained. “My dying wish is, ‘Lord, please let win first place and take me home.’”

He has a slew of medals now, and a lot of stories.

“In 1980s, I got the bronze. 1990s, I got the silver, and 2000s and on, I got the gold,” he said. “My competition was not too much anymore because a lot of these fellas could not keep in shape — or they died.”

The Meijer State Games include 38 events at 43 venues around Grand Rapids.

We welcome thoughts and comments from our viewers. We ask that everyone keep their remarks civil and respectful. Postings that contain profanity, racist, or potentially libelous remarks will be deleted. We will delete any commercial postings, as well.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s