101-Year-Old Woman Is Still Working on a Lobster Boat With No Plans To Retire


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A post shared by The Boston Globe (@bostonglobe)

Max Oliver is still working on a lobster boat at the age of 78. If you think that's astounding, it's nothing compared to his crewmate—she’s 101 years old! Virginia Oliver, Max’s mother, is still climbing onto the ship three days a week (from May to November) to trap and catch lobsters off the coast of Maine.

Together, mother and son work in tandem doing one of the most hazardous jobs in the country. Max hauls the traps from the water while Virginia measures their catches, keeping the large lobsters and releasing the ones that are too small. For her, this is second nature. She has been lobstering off and on since she was 7 or 8 years old—right before the Great Depression. “It’s not hard work for me,” she told The Boston Globe. “It might be for somebody else, but not me.”

Although “not hard work” for Virginia, that doesn’t mean it’s not dangerous. For instance, she recently cut herself so badly that she needed stitches. The occupational hazards, coupled with her age, have left care providers urging her to step back. “And the doctor said to me, ‘What are you out there lobstering for?'” Virginia said to CBS News. “And I said, ‘Because I want to.'”

Virginia shows no signs of slowing down and has no plans to retire lobstering. And for anyone who asks how much longer she plans on working, she has an answer: “Until I die. And I don’t know when that will be.”

At 101 years old, Virginia Oliver has no plans to retire from lobstering. Watch her work in the video below:

h/t [The Boston Globe]

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Sara Barnes

Sara Barnes is a Staff Editor at My Modern Met, Manager of My Modern Met Store, and co-host of the My Modern Met Top Artist Podcast. As an illustrator and writer living in Seattle, she chronicles illustration, embroidery, and beyond through her blog Brown Paper Bag and Instagram @brwnpaperbag. She wrote a book about embroidery artist Sarah K. Benning titled 'Embroidered Life' that was published by Chronicle Books in 2019. Sara is a graduate of the Maryland Institute College of Art. She earned her BFA in Illustration in 2008 and MFA in Illustration Practice in 2013.
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