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BIOGRAPHY

Gibson was born as Mary Elizabeth Highland in Clio, South Carolina, USA, on 6 June 1909, to parents Lawrence and Ethel Highland. She had seven siblings: Inez, Alonia, Thomas, Henry, Richard, Howard and Luther.

At the age of 21, she moved to Jersey City, New Jersey. She eventually married Pell Edward Gibson with whom she had four children. Initially, she did domestic work, but later worked at companies such as Westinghouse and Emerson, starting as a production-line worker, eventually becoming an inspector. Her husband passed away in 1979.

After retirement, she worked in several positions, such as a volunteer worker at Christ Hospital and Jersey City Medical Center. She also worked as a foster grandparent at the Claremont-Lafayette Daycare Center, and at one point as a baker. On her 105th birthday, she received greetings from President Barack Obama. When asked about her secret to life’s longevity, she would reply with: “I always ate well, I always walked, and every night I ask God to let me see another sunrise.”

Gibson passed away in Jersey City, New Jersey, USA, on 22 April 2020. She was survived by three children, 8 grandchildren, 13 great-grandchildren and 3 great-great grandchildren.

RECOGNITION

On 15 April 2020, following the death of 111-year-old Maria Garcia of Fort Lee, Gibson became the oldest (known) living person in the U.S. state of New Jersey.

ATTRIBUTION

* “109 years young” – Hudson Reporter, 17 June 2018

* “Jersey City woman turns 110 on D-Day’s 75th anniversary” – nj.com, 6 June 2019

* “Mary Elizabeth Gibson 1909 – 2020” – The Jersey Journal, 5 May 2020

GALLERY

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