Congratulations to Ms. Besse Cooper of Georgia. Born August 26th, 1896, she turns 116 years old today.
This is quite a remarkable achievement of human longevity. There are only seven people who have been verified to have lived longer than 116, the eldest among them Jeanne Calment of France who lived to 122.
Ms. Cooper is now the 4th oldest person from the US in history.
She was born in Tennessee and moved to Georgia in the 1920s. A bridge in her hometown was named after her this past weeks.
According to one of her sons, Sidney, “the older she has gotten the more wittier she has gotten.” Proving she is still conversant he relayed her message to those at the bridge naming ceremony; “I’m glad I gave them a reason to name it.”
Cooper has always answered the question as to why she has lived so long with two key points. First she says, “I mind my own business,” most likely a way of saying she doesn’t let things stress her out. Secondly she contends “I don’t eat junk food,” attesting the importance of a healthful diet.
Furthermore Cooper is well known for begin physically active with a tomboy youth and working on a farm until 105 when she took up residence in the nursing home in which she still lives.
These lifestyle choices of careful diet, physical activity, and low stress rural living are commonly found among supercentenarians.
The family will be celebrating a low key party at her residence. Happy birthday Ms. Cooper…many more!