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Author Topic: World's Oldest perosn turns 115 on Sunday.  (Read 829 times)

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Mister_E

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World's Oldest perosn turns 115 on Sunday.
« on: April 18, 2008, 11:08:04 PM »

From The Associated Press


SHELBYVILLE, Ind. (AP) — Maybe it was a lifetime of chores on the family farm that accounts for Edna Parker's long life. Or maybe just good genes explain why the world's oldest known person will turn 115 on Sunday, defying staggering odds.

Scientists who study longevity hope Parker and others who live to 110 or beyond — they're called supercentenarians — can help solve the mystery of extreme longevity.

"We don't know why she's lived so long," said Don Parker, her 59-year-old grandson. "But she's never been a worrier and she's always been a thin person, so maybe that has something to do with it."

On Friday, Edna Parker laughed and smiled as relatives and guests released 115 balloons into sunny skies outside her nursing home. Dressed in pearls, a blue and white polka dot dress and new white shoes, she clutched a red rose during the festivities.

Two years ago, researchers from the New England Centenarian Study at Boston University took a blood sample from Parker for the group's DNA database of supercentenarians.

Her DNA is now preserved with samples of about 100 other people who made the 110-year milestone and whose genes are being analyzed, said Dr. Tom Perls, an aging specialist who directs the project.

"They're really our best bet for finding the elusive Holy Grail of our field — which are these longevity-enabling genes," he said.

Only 75 living people — 64 women and 11 men — are 110 or older, according to the Gerontology Research Group of Inglewood, Calif., which verifies reports of extreme ages.

Parker, who was born April 20, 1893, was recognized by Guinness World Records as the oldest of that group last August after the death of a Japanese woman four months her senior.

A widow since her husband, Earl, died in 1938 of a heart attack, Parker lived alone in their farmhouse until age 100, when she moved into her son Clifford's home. She cheated death a few months later.



Whoa, must be really crappy to be that old.

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SOawesomeness

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Re: World's Oldest perosn turns 115 on Sunday.
« Reply #1 on: April 18, 2008, 11:10:23 PM »

I'll bet she dies on Saturday or sometime this night. :0
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