113-year-old Jewish woman Goldie Michelson just became the oldest living person in the United States, after the death of 116-year-old Susannah Mushatt-Jones last week. Recently, JTA spoke to Goldie’s daughter, 84-year-old Renee Minsky, about her mother’s life.
Here are a few surprising facts about her:
1. She wrote a master’s thesis about Worcester’s Jews. Goldie grew up, and lived her entire life, in Worchester, Massachusetts. She earned a master’s degree at Clark University in sociology, and her thesis focused on the Jews of Worcester, titling it, “A Citizenship Survey of Worcester Jewry.”
2. She’s volunteered for Jewish groups like Hadassah, and has even helped resettle Soviet Jewish refugees. In 1989, Goldie helped Jewish immigrants from the Soviet Union settle into Worcester, while also volunteering at organizations such as the National Council of Jewish Women.
3. She attributes walking to her longevity. She stated in Clark University’s magazine in 2012 that she was thrilled when she sold her car: “One of the great joys of life was when I sold my car.”
4. Her favorite foods are chocolate and lobster. She also apparently loves hot dogs and corn on the cob.
Learn more fun facts at JTA here.