BROOKLYN, New York (WNYW) -- Susannah Mushatt Jones of Brooklyn celebrates her 116th birthday today as the oldest living person in the world.
Born on July 6, 1899, Ms. Jones became the record holder at the age of 115 years and 346 days.
Asked for the secret of her longevity, she said: “sleep!”
While she’s lost her eyesight and is hard of hearing, Jones isn’t bed-bound and only takes two medications a day.
Ms. Jones is known as “T” (short for auntie) to her 100 nieces and nephews.
She will celebrate with two birthday parties. She is having a small party with family today and a larger community party tomorrow.
When she was honored for participating in the community watch at 106, she said, “I never drink or smoke. I surround myself with love and positive energy. That’s the key to long life and happiness.”
Susannah was born Susie Mushatt in Lowndes County, Alabama, to Mary and Callie Mushatt. Her father was a sharecropper who picked cotton to support his wife and ten children. In 1922, Ms. Jones left Alabama for New Jersey before moving to New York City in 1923, finding employment as a live-in housekeeper and childcare provider.