World’s oldest known person who enjoyed a glass of wine every day dies at 118


Sister Andre, Lucile Randon, prays in a wheelchair (Picture: AFP via Getty)

The world’s oldest person, French nun Lucile Randon, has died aged 118.

Known as Sister Andre after joining a Catholic charitable order in 1944, she died in her sleep at a nursing home in Toulon, France.

Born in 1904, she lived through two world wars and survived two global pandemics – Spanish Flu in 1918 and most recently Covid-19, the oldest person to do so.

David Tavella, spokesman for the Sainte-Catherine-Laboure nursing home, told AFP: ‘There is great sadness but… it was her desire to join her beloved brother. For her, it’s a liberation.’

Randon grew up in a Protestant family with two brothers before the siblings were separated when the boys were sent off to fight in the First World War.

Speaking to AFP on her 116th birthday, she revealed one of her fondest memories was their safe return: ‘It was rare, in families, there were usually two dead rather than two alive.

‘They both came back.’

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The world’s oldest known person, Lucile Randon, has died aged 118 (Picture: AFP via Getty)

She converted to Catholicism and was baptised at the age of 26, later taking the name Sister Andre in honour of one of her brothers who by that time had passed away.

The nun worked as a teacher and governess in her younger years and spent much of the Second World War looking after children.

When the war ended, she was assigned to a hospital in Vichy where she worked for 31 years.

Her days in the retirement home were spent praying, enjoying mealtimes and visits from residents and hospice workers.

Care home workers also revealed she enjoyed a glass of wine every day.

Randon was born in southern France on February 11, 1904, when World War I was still a decade away (Picture: AFP via Getty)

In one of her final interviews she told reporters there last spring: ‘People say that work kills, for me work kept me alive, I kept working until I was 108.’

Despite losing her sight and relying on a wheelchair to get around, she still devoted time to caring for elderly people much younger than herself.

‘People should help each other and love each other instead of hating,’ she said.

‘If we shared all that, things would be a lot better.’

She was Europe’s eldest person for some time, but entered the Guinness Book of Records last year as the world’s oldest following the death of Kane Tanaka, a Japanese woman who died aged 119.

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