Nabi Tajima of Kikai, Kagoshima, Japan passed away last April 21, holding the record as the oldest person. Tajima peacefully departed her life at 117 years old. Before her death, she spent her remaining days at the hospital since January.
Tajima held the record for the world’s oldest person since September 2017. She followed Violet Brown, who also died at 117, after holding the record as the oldest person for five months. Brown passed away in Jamaica.
Born on August 4, 1990, Nabi Tajima, lived at the town of Kikai, located between Okinawa and Kyushu, Japan’s southernmost main islands. According to Gerontology Research Group, Tajima had nine children and 160 descendants. When Tajima’s grandson, Hiroyuki, 65, got interviewed by local media, he said, “She passed away as if falling asleep. As she had been a hard worker, I want to tell her ‘rest well.”
Tajima is the last person born in the 19th century, which ended on Jan. 1, 1901. She witnessed time unfold through the 19th, 20th and 21st centuries. Tajima is one of the few people who remembered a time before World War I. Due to her long life, she became a part of an exclusive group of supercentenarians who outlived 110 years old.
According to U.S.-based Gerontology Research Group, there are only 36 people who belong to the supercentenarians group. All of them, except one, are women, and 18 of them are Japanese. Based on Gerontology Research Group, “eating delicious things and sleeping well,” are some of Tajima’s secret to long life.
Before passing on the mantle, the government acknowledged Tajima’s world record as the oldest person. Japanese officials prepared a ceremony as marking of Tajima’s achievement. In the service, people played music using traditional Japanese instruments, where Tajima danced with her hands.
Now that Tajima has passed, the record for being the oldest person in the world has been passed to Chiyo Miyako. Miyako is also from Japan, and she had just turned 117. On the other hand, Masazo Nonaka, 112 years old, holds the record as the world’s oldest male. Guinness Book of World Record is planning to acknowledge Tajima as the world oldest person.
Quality of life is key, and who knows, with proper a healthy lifestyle maybe more people will be living well past 100 years in the not too distant future. Diet, exercise, a positive mindset, minimal stress, the environment, genetics and perhaps even a little luck all play a vital role in one’s lifespan.
Here is Nabi with some friends and adoring fans :