by Jim Daly
A colleague recently had the pleasure of speaking with Sidney Cooper of Monroe, Georgia. Mr. Cooper’s mother, Besse, is the oldest woman in the world.
To put that number in context, at the time she was born, Grover Cleveland was President and Orville and Wilbur Wright were still seven years away from their first powered flight over Kitty Hawk. She’s now lived in three separate centuries and actually remembers the turn of the 19th to the 20th and the 20th to the 21st.
Mrs. Cooper was born in east Tennessee and was the third of eight children. After graduating from college she worked briefly as a school teacher before moving to Georgia at the beginning of World War I.
Besse Cooper and her husband, Luther, had four children. Widowed in December of 1963 after 39 years of marriage, Mrs. Cooper has remained single ever since. When she turned 105 she told her son had she known she was going to live so long, she would have remarried!
A person can learn quite a bit from someone who has lived so many years. Here are five lessons culled from the long life of Besse Cooper, as conveyed by her son...
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