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The world’s oldest woman just celebrated her 116th birthday Saturday. Jeralean Talley of Inkster, Michigan was born in 1899 in Virginia. How’s that for amazing?

President Obama was so impressed that he sent Talley a letter, offering her warm wishes and congratulations.

“The breadth of your experiences and depth of your wisdom reflect the long path our Nation has traveled since 1899,” Obama wrote in the letter. “During this time, there have been setbacks and breakthroughs, false starts and improbable victories, and through it all our country’s spirit has endured — strengthened and enriched by each generation.”

The Gerontology Research Group, who confirmed her as the oldest living person last month, said people are more likely to win the lottery than live to Talley’s age.

Talley credits the Lord and her deep religious beliefs for her long life. Her family says she is still relatively active and describes her as wise, humorous, positive and never one to complain.

Well, there you have it: the secret to long life.

Happy birthday Ms. Jeralean!

(Photo: Michael Kinloch)

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World’s Oldest Woman Celebrates Her 116th Birthday & Shares Her Secret To Long Life was originally published on

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