Three Northeast Mississippi residents were recently named among the Blue Cross & Blue Shield "Ageless Heroes" for their achievements at age 65 and over.

Although it's too late for James "Jim" Gault Sr., 66, of Saltillo, to get a letter jacket, that hasn't kept him from taking up track and band almost 50 years after graduating from high school.

Margaret Rogers, 86, of Corinth, says if you don't want to dread old age, it helps to have a passion.

Callie Young, 85, of Pontotoc, says she lives with a sense of expectancy which probably explains why she has such an enthusiasm for new endeavors - such as learning how to operate a computer at age 83.

More than 200 senior citizens were nominated for the fourth annual Mississippi Ageless Heroes program. Judges chose 24 nominees - ranging in age from 66 to 92 - to receive the 2001 award.

These and other heroes will be honored at a Jan. 16 awards luncheon at the Lake Terrace Convention Center in Hattiesburg.

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