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BIOGRAPHY

Sawada was born in Yasugi, Shimane Prefecture, Japan on 1 January 1912. After graduating from Hamada Women’s Normal School (currently Shimane University), she worked as an elementary school teacher for many years. At some point she married a man who was also an elementary school teacher. The couple had four children.

Her husband served as a school principal and lived until the age of 99. After retiring, she took up tanka (Japanese short poetry) writing as a hobby, a passion she still pursues today. It was reported that she possessed a talent for poetry, having won first-prize in the Tanka contest at the Shimane Prefecture Cultural Festival two times; in 1982 and 1997. While at home, she used to read four to five newspapers a day, including both local and national publications. Even at the age of 109, she maintained the ability to write letters to her family in her masterful handwriting.

Sawada currently lives in Matsue, Shimane Prefecture.

RECOGNITION

On 21 June 2021, following the death of 110-year-old Fumi Fujiwara, she became the oldest living person in Shimane Prefecture, aged 109.

Sawada was reported anonymously as Shimane’s oldest resident during 2021’s Keiro no hi (Respect for the Aged Day). In 2022, her name was revealed.

ATTRIBUTION

(Some of the information regarding Mitsuno Sawada’s biography was gathered through interviews conducted by LongeviQuest with her family.)

* ”県内最高齢 松江の109歳/県発表” Sanin Chuo Shimpo, June 2021 morning edition

* Shimane Prefecture press release, 15 September 2023

GALLERY

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