LITTLE FALLS, NJ (PIX11) – Vincent Dransfield lives life on his own terms, and that’s not something many 108-year-olds can say. He leased a car two years ago and is still driving — in more ways than one.
“I’m still driving everybody crazy,” Dransfield joked. When asked what type of car he drives, he responded by saying “four wheels.”
He’s still sharp and quick-witted.
“I like to have a sense of humor,” Dransfield said. “It’s good. It gets you somewhere. If you’re nasty and angry, you ain’t going nowhere.”
Dransfield is also the oldest firefighter at the Little Falls Volunteer Fire Department. Not as active as he once was, he’s still on the roster at Singac Engine Company No. 3.
“I said, ‘When I grow up, I’m going to become a fireman,’ so I became a fireman,” he said.
His contributions and pictures from the last 84 years with the department are plastered on the firehouse walls. He’s proud of showing his accomplishments to his great-grandchildren.
“That’s the helmet that I used to wear when I was fire chief,” he said as he pointed to the original helmet.
His great-grandchildren are just as proud to call him a great-grandfather.
“It’s a lot of fun,” his great-grandson Matthew Lista said. “Every single time he tells jokes, he tells stories. Just like stuff that you wouldn’t think he would remember, he’s remembering back to when he was 30 and stuff like that. It’s crazy to think he could remember all these stories and they’re awesome.”
Dransfield is also independent. He lives on his own, does his own grocery shopping and doesn’t take daily medications — only over-the-counter medication when he has some knee pain.
“He has his daily routine,” his granddaughter Erica Lista said. “He gets up with the train. He goes to the QuickChek in Little Falls and gets his coffee and paper.”
So what is his secret to longevity?
“I drink Ovaltine every day,” Dransfield claimed.
It’s a sweet treat for a sweet man who’s proving that age is nothing but a number.
Dransfield turns 109 in March, and all he wants for his birthday is for his family to come over to his house and spend time with him, which they happily plan on doing.