Jack Faust was born in 1911. That, in and of itself, is pretty amazing -- but add to that his win of two gold medals in shuffleboard and bowling at this year's National Veterans Golden Age Games (NVGAG), and one can truly understand this remarkable centenarian. A member of the VA Palo Alto Health Care System team, Faust was recognized at the closing ceremonies and presented a framed, signed photo and letter from the Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Gary Roughead congratulating him.
"The Games really keep me going," said Faust. "I met a young guy at the air rifle competition who thought he was the oldest guy here--at 98. I told him that was pretty impressive, but I had him by two years! Then we had a great time just getting to know each other. When you are this old, getting to know someone takes a long time."
Faust served twice in the Navy, first in the Yangtze River Patrol (China) from 1928 until 1931, and then in the South Pacific during World War II. In addition to being a painter most his life, he stayed active as a volunteer at the Hayward, Calif., Police Department and VA and served the community as a Mason, an Elk, and a Veteran.
Jack's athletic career began in 2007 in Houston when he carried the California flag at the Golden Age Games opening ceremony and competed in bowling and checkers against Veterans in the oldest category -- 80+ -- who were as much as 16 years younger. Since then, he has won medals in croquet, shuffleboard, and air rifle at Games in Indianapolis, Birmingham, and Des Moines.
We believe that Faust is the only 100-year-old competitor in the Games' 25-year history. "Life begins at 55," is one of the mottos of the Games, but Faust's athletic life began at 96. Just another sign of his hopeful and winning perspective -- an attitude that epitomizes these Games.
"To the youngsters competing, I say, better get practicing for St. Louis, because I intend to see you there," said Faust.