World’s Oldest Person Dies In New York At Age 116

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116Susannah Mushatt Jones, the world’s oldest person, has died in New York at age 116.

Robert Young, a senior consultant for the Los Angeles-based Gerontology Research Group, said Jones died Thursday night at a public housing facility for seniors in Brooklyn where she had lived for more than three decades. He said she had been ill for the past 10 days.

Jones was born in a small farm town near Montgomery, Alabama, in 1899. She was one of 11 siblings and attended a special school for young black girls. When she graduated from high school in 1922, Jones worked full time helping family members pick crops. She left after a year to begin working as a nanny, heading north to New Jersey and eventually making her way to New York.

“She adored kids,” Lois Judge said of her aunt in a 2015 interview with The Associated Press. Jones never had any children of her own and was married for only a few years.

Family members said last year that they credited her long life to love of family and generosity to others. Judge said at the time that she believed it helped that her aunt grew up on a rural farm, where she ate fresh fruits and vegetables that she picked herself.

After she moved to New York, Jones worked with a group of her fellow high school graduates to start a scholarship fund for young African-American women to go to college. She also was active in her public housing building’s tenant patrol until she was 106.

Jones became Guinness World Records’ official oldest person when 117-year-old Misao Okawa died in Tokyo last year.

“Ms. Jones was the very last American from the 1800s,” said Young, whose group tracks and maintains a database of the world’s longest-living people.

Young said 116-year-old Emma Morano, of Verbania, Italy, just a few months younger than Jones, is now the unofficial world’s oldest person.

(AP)


5 COMMENTS

  1. Well I guess she was old enough to remember George Orwell. Speaking of whom I see that his ideas are still in use. Just an hour or so ago there was an article about a Rutgers valedictorian. Now it has disappeared into the incineration device which is now called the mists of cyberspace!

  2. Unbelievable, every second day there is another article about the oldest persos. It seems to me that there are a few thousand oldest people living….

  3. #2: By definition, there is only ONE oldest person in the world at any time. When that person dies, the next younger person becomes the ONLY oldest person in the world.

    Since they are old, the “torch” passes frequently, which is why “every second day” there’s a new (ONLY) oldest person in the world.

  4. She was the second to the last person alive who was around in 1899, the last time sh’eilas g’shamim in Chu”l started one day earlier (Dec 3-4 from the last year of the 18th Cent. through the penultimate of the 19th). 1900 was a leap year only in O.S. (Julian calculation, still in some use at the time in several countries, such as Russia, Greece and Turkey), accounting for the most recent one-day jump. The next further divergence will not be until 2100, the last, i.e., Century year of the 21st Cent, assuming the Gregorian calendar is still in use. That will cause another jump in the beginning of Tal UMatar (if there is anyone left in Chutz LaAretz). Birkas haChamma, though  computed similarly, doesn’t experience one-day jumps, since it must fall on a Wed. The year 2000, divisible by 400, had no difference in length between the calendars, yielding a 200-year gap between increases in divergence, as occurs every 4 centuries.