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Friday 31 March 2023 Dublin: 9°C
Associated Press
Is an Irish breakfast staple the secret behind this woman's long (long) life?
Susannah Mushatt Jones was born on July 6 1899 – when Michael Collins would have been 9-years-old.

SHE WAS A teenager during World War I – and her life spans three centuries.

Back in July, New Yorker Susannah Mushatt Jones celebrated her 116th birthday as the world’s oldest living person.

To give some Irish context: she was born on July 6 1899, when Michael Collins would have been 9-years-old.

So what’s the secret to her long, long life?

It could well be a few rashers of bacon.

“She’ll eat bacon all day long,” an aide at the hospital where she lives told the New York Post.

Miss Susannah “didn’t chat much” when the paper’s reporter paid a visit, but apparently “she can sure cuss”.

“Adjust her quilt and it’s ‘What the hell you doing?’”

According to her nieces: “God has her here for a reason.”

Oldest living person

The former live-in housekeeper, known as “T” to her 100 nieces and nephews, became the record holder at the age of 115 years and 346 days as of June 17, according to Guinness World Records.

Her life began in the final months of the 19th century, took in the full sweep of the 20th and has witnessed the start of the 21st.

Jones was born in Alabama to a father who picked cotton to support his wife and ten children. She was accepted into college, but her parents could not afford the tuition.

So in 1922 she left for New Jersey, and then moved to New York a year later to work as a live-in housekeeper and nanny.

Asked earlier this year what her secret was, she replied, “Sleep”.

“I surround myself with love and positive energy. That’s the key to long life and happiness,” she was quoted as saying.

The record for the oldest person to ever live is held by Jeanne Calment of France, who died in 1997 at the age of 122 years and 164 days.

With reporting from: © AFP, 2015

Read: The world’s oldest person has died at the age of 116

Also: A British couple just became the world’s oldest newlyweds

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