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Florida man celebrates his 80th birthday lifeguarding

12:38 PM, Jul 1, 2013   |    comments
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MANATEE COUNTY, Florida (WFLA) -- A Manatee county man celebrated his 80th birthday poolside on Friday at the GT Bray Aquatic Center in Bradenton doing what he loved most. He was teaching swimming lessons.

He talked matter of factly about his age, "I see too many people my age who don't do this," he said. Old is an understatement and I don't want stereotypes to define me."

Steinfirst first started lifeguarding in New Jersey as a teenager in 1949. "I just thought it was a lot of fun to do. And an interesting way to meet the ladies," he said.

He later spent time in the business world, but his real love was always the water. Over his lifetime, he enjoyed sailing, scuba-diving and kayaking.

Steinfirst began teaching swimming lessons part-time in the 1960s. He was concerned that drowning was one of the leading causes of death among young children and took great pleasure in helping influence young lives.

"The instructing part is important to me," he said. "It's good to watch them progress."

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