The Oldest Person In the World Has Died In Japan

NBC News

We hope that we live a long and healthy life. We hope that we see our children get married and live long enough to meet our grandchildren and possibly even our great-grandchildren. It’s hard to imagine all of the changes we might see in the world if we live that long. Only the oldest living people know what it’s truly like to outlive most of your peers and see the changes that come with each generation.

In January 2019, Kane Tanaka officially became the oldest living person according to Guinness World Records. She was 116 years and 28 days old at the time. Now, in April 2022, Tanaka, who lived in a nursing home in Japan, has died. She was 119 years old.

Tanaka’s great-granddaughter, Junko Tanaka, set up a Twitter account to share pictures of her great-grandmother and to celebrate milestones she reached. For example, she shared pictures of her great-grandmother’s 119th birthday party at the nursing home in Japan where she lived.

She also tweeted pictures of her grandmother on her official birthday and shared the message, “I hope you’ll continue to live life cheerfully and to the fullest.”

Junko Tanaka shared with CNN why she decided to set up the Twitter account. She explained, “I might be biased because I’m related to her but I think it’s kind of amazing — I wanted to share that with the world and for people to feel inspired and to feel her joy.”

Tanaka was born in 1903. She married a rice shop owner when she was only 19 years old. She continued to work at the shop until she was 103. During her life, she lived through multiple wars, including two world wars. She also survived the 1918 Spanish flu, and more recently, she lived through the Covid-19 pandemic. Tanaka also fought and won the battle with cancer two times.

Watch the video below to learn more about Kane Tanaka and to see video of her on her birthday as well as to learn who the oldest living person is now.

According to Government data from 2020, in Japan, 1 in 1,565 people is at least 100 years old. The majority are women who make up 88% of the 100+ population. In Japan, women have an average life expectancy of 87.45 years while men have an average life expectancy of 81.4 years.

Do you know anyone who is over 100 years old? Can you imagine living to be over 100?