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America's oldest women resides in Jacksonville

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by Jennifer Heathcock

JACKSONVILLE (KYTX) - Her life spans three centuries. She's seen the invention of x-rays, a man walk on the moon, even the invention of the internet. Eunice Sanborn of Jacksonville is the oldest woman in the country. CBS 19's Jennifer Heathcock spoke with family and friends, and learned just what she credits with her 113 years.

"I'm glad you came to see me today."

This is Eunice Sanborn 2 years ago, when she was 111.

"I've enjoyed every minute of it with her too, because she's a lot of fun and I never wanted for anything to talk about with her," said Christine Bunn.

Bunn met Sanborn at the First Baptist Church in Jacksonville, more than 50 years ago.

"50 years of more at least, seems like she's my friend for life."

Even when life brings 113 years, Sanborn was born in 1895 and is now the oldest woman in the US.

"She gives all the credit of her life to the Lord, and still prays for people. She's concerned for others, while she's bedridden."

Sanborn has lived in this house since 1940. She opened Love's Lookout in the 30's with her husband, outliving three, as well as her only child, a daughter who died at the age of 90.

"She has such inner strength and faith. Things you think you couldn't go through."

Sanborn gets help around the clock from caregivers, and credits her longevity to faith - and a little something more.

"She'll say, 'I love red peppers and olive oil.' That was her thing and she still gets it too," said Bunn.

Whatever the secret, she's found it.

"It was just meant to be. The Lord wanted her to be here this long, and plans on making it another year.

The Gerontology Research Group has Sanborn listed as 113 years old, but family members say she was born a year earlier in 1895. Sanborn is one of 74 people in the world over 110 years old.

 

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