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BIOGRAPHY

Elizabeth Francis was born in Louisiana, USA on 25 July 1909. Her parents were John Francis (1880–1969) and Virginia Matthews (1880–1920). Upon her mother’s passing, she and her five siblings were sent to different homes. Francis was sent to Houston, where she was raised by her aunt.

In 1928, she gave birth to her only child, a daughter named Dorothy. As a single mother supporting herself and her daughter, she operated a coffee shop at ABC 13 News in Houston for approximately 20 years until her retirement in 1975.

In 1999, she moved in with her daughter in Houston. Around the age of 108, she began requiring a wheelchair for mobility. When asked about the secret of her longevity, she replied that it is her faith in God. In July 2023, her 114th birthday, she had three grandchildren, five great-grandchildren and four great-great-grandchildren. Her daughter was 94 years old at the time, likely making her the world’s oldest living person with a living parent. On her birthday party, she joked that eating whatever she wants is the secret to a long life.

Francis’s sister Bertha Johnson (6 August 1904 – 21 February 2011) lived to the age of 106, making them one of the oldest sibling pairs.

Francis currently lives in Houston, Texas, USA.

RECOGNITION

She was validated by LongeviQuest on 11 January 2023 based on the research of Stefan Maglov.

On her 114th birthday party on 30 July 2023, she was visited by LongeviQuest CEO, Ben Meyers, who presented her with a plaque honoring her status as the Oldest Living Texan. Two journalists from the Norwegian newspaper Dagens Næringsliv visited her as well, subsequently publishing a news article on the occasion.

On 22 February 2024, following the death of 116-year-old Edie Ceccarelli, she became the oldest living person in the United States, as well as the fifth-oldest living person in the world. She is additionally one of the top 100 oldest people ever validated.

On 2 April 2024, following the passing of 114-year-old Juan Vicente Pérez Mora of Venezuela, she became the fourth-oldest living person in the world.

ATTRIBUTION

* John Francis Sr. – Find A Grave

* “At age 114, here’s her advice: ‘Speak your mind and don’t hold your tongue’” – The Washington Post, 18 August 2023

* “Jakten på verdens eldste menneske” – Dagens Næringsliv (DN), 26 October 2023

GALLERY

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