The Story of Our Lives

Most have retired, at least partly, and their fears of not having enough money have proved unfounded. Some 64 percent are "completely" or "very satisfied" with their financial situation. Only 6 percent were "not at all satisfied." Many say their standard of living is actually higher since retirement.

The vast majority own their own homes (93 percent) and 65 percent don't have mortgages.

But there are fewer of them now. More than 1,400 have died.

The project is far from over, and there is much more data in the files than can be included here. So Hauser and the 50 persons who are involved in the project will continue probing those Happy Days veterans during reunions across the state this fall. After all, their story has become our story.

Lee Dye is a former science writer for the Los Angeles Times. He now lives in Juneau, Alaska.

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