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'Two little old ladies who walk every day' | Austin senior citizens walk The Domain for a purpose

Local senior citizens say they are walking to build an immune system during the pandemic – and to be able to dance again.

AUSTIN, Texas — Any given morning you can see Marilyn Bettis and Chloe Johnson walking.

"We're known as the two little old ladies who walk every day in The Domain," said Bettis.

The two walk at least two miles. But before that, Bettis and her husband, Richard, walk three.

"It gives us special together time," said Marilyn Bettis.

While the couple have always walked, now given the COVID-19 pandemic, they know it's more important than ever.

"Our whole idea is to get out there, keep our lungs as fit as we possibly can, and use exercise as a way to build immunity to catching the virus," explained Richard Bettis. 

Credit: Supplied
Marilyn and Richard Bettis

Once the couple is finished, Marilyn Bettis then meets with her "dear friend," Johnson. 

"First, I should probably tell you I'm addicted to dancing," is how Johnson introduces herself.

RELATED: No gym, no problem! Senior loses 120 pounds by walking in her living room every day

The two grab their walking sticks and begin their rounds in The Domain. They pass the iPic theater, Dillards, Dicks Sporting Goods and all the stores in between.

"It means survival," said Johnson.

Not many people think about their next step. Not many people have a purpose for walking.

But for Johnson, it's so she can dance again. A woman who used to need a cane to get around, Johnson can now move on her own all because she walks.

"That's my goal now, two records without sitting down," she said.

For Marilyn and Richard Bettis, their goal is to keep one another healthy.

"We want to be together for a long time, and that's it – that's the motivation," she said.


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