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Emma Morano

1899 - 2017 Obituary Condolences Gallery
Emma Morano (Antonio Calanni / AP)
Emma Morano, the world’s oldest person and the last verified to have been born in the 1800s, died Saturday, April 15, 2017, at her home in Verbania, Italy. She was 117 years and 137 days old.

Her physician, Dr. Carlo Brava, told The Associated Press that her caretaker had informed him that Morano had died peacefully while resting in her armchair. She had lived for many years in a two-room apartment where she was frequently visited by relatives and neighbors.

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Born Emma Martina Luigia Morano Nov. 29, 1899, in Piedmont, Italy, she was the eldest of eight children.

She was married in 1926, but the marriage was not a happy one, and she drove her husband out of the house in 1938. At that time, Italy was controlled by the Fascists and women were expected to be submissive to their husbands. She remained technically married until her husband’s death in 1978 but lived on her own for the rest of her life. She supported herself with factory and kitchen work.

She became the oldest Italian person ever in August 2015 and the world’s oldest living person in May 2016. She attributed her longevity to eating three raw eggs a day, even against the advice of doctors.

“She was always very decisive,” Brava told The Associated Press.

Whether it was the advice of doctors or a controlling husband, Morano always made up her own mind.

“I didn’t want to be dominated by anyone,” she told The New York Times in a 2015 interview.

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