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98-year-old woman still selling Girl Scout cookies

‘Oh, I love it’

WERNERSVILLE, Penn. – You’ve seen Girl Scouts selling their cookies outside stores or at your front door, but you probably haven’t seen the 98-year-old Girl Scout who puts on her uniform every year to help out.

It’s that time of the year to stock up on boxes of Peanut Butter Patties, Caramel Delights and Thin Mints. Perhaps the most excited Girl Scout around is Ronnie Backenstoe.

She's proudly dawned the Girl Scout uniform for 88 years.

“I became a world down of 1932. I wanted to be one so badly,” Backenstoe said. “My mother said, ‘When you’re 10.’ When I was 10, I was ready to go."

Backenstoe's adventures in the Scouts have taken her from coast to coast and around the world. Later in life as a Scout Master, she recalls traveling to Jamaica and Switzerland with her troop.

Even in retirement in Pennsylvania, Backenstoe’s still going strong.

“Her stamina, her energy, her mind -- she’s nonstop,” Backenstoe’s Troop Leader Barbara Allen Perelli said.

She says she's happiest selling cookies alongside her fellow scouts.

"Oh, I love it. Oh yes," said Backenstoe.

Backenstoe told a reporter, when she first became a Girl Scout in the 1930s, there were only three different kinds of cookies in each box and they cost only about 15 cents.”

Even though the price has increased, Backenstoe’s mission has remained the same, and that is to inspire and educate future generations.

“I think that was just part of living and that’s what really girl scouting is. It teaches you how to live,” Backenstoe said.