Thursday, 30 September 2010

Yeah Old People Rule

With My morbid fascination of death I have been checking Wikipedia’s ‘recent deaths’ daily. I’m not sure why, just curious I guess. Occasionally I find the odd death that amuses me, on 20th September 2010 Fud Le Clerc, died of natural causes, aged 86. Fud is best remembered as the first person to score a straight ‘nul points’ at the Eurovision Song Contest in 1962. You can’t really get more depressing than that.

Whilst perusing the ‘recent deaths’ I also came across a term I had never heard before. A supercentenarian is a person who has reached the age of 110. This age is achieved by only one in a thousand centenarians. Furthermore, only 2% of supercentenarians live to be 115. On the 2nd September 2010, Slovenian born Katarina Mariniè died at the ripe old age of 110. One day later the UK’s oldest person died at the age of 111. Annie Turnball now hands her crown over to Elsie Steele also 111, and hanging on in there.

Interestingly enough I also share my birthday (21st February) with the world’s oldest verified person, 122 year old Jeanne Calment who died in 1997. Coincidently the world’s second oldest verified person, Japanese
born Shigechiyo Izumi died on my 10th birthday in 1986.

Whilst trawling my way through links in Wikipedia I also discovered that Guernsey born Margaret Ann Neve was the first recorded woman supercentenarian, and the first supercentenarian of either sex in the 20th
century. At the time of her death she was the oldest living person at the age of 110 years 321 days and also the oldest person ever at that point. Neve was also one of the few recorded people who lived in the 18th, 19th
and 20th centuries.

Amusingly when I first read the word ‘supercentenarian’ I read it as supercenturion, which is obviously something completely different.


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