American woman Lucia DeClerck has survived the 1918 influenza pandemic, two world wars, the loss of three husbands, one son and many of her doctors. Recently added to the list: COVID-19, which she tested positive for on her 105th birthday.
“She sailed through the two-week quarantine like a champ without any symptoms,” said her granddaughter, Shawn Laws O’Neil.
The tale triggered a flurry of recent articles; her uplifting health news spread far and wide, resulting in an outpouring of greetings from around the globe – all of which reached DeClerck at her residence in Mystic Meadows Rehab and Nursing Center in Little Egg Harbor, New Jersey.
Prayer and gin (for medicinal purposes)
There, ensconced in a room adorned with pictures of saints and an olive wood cross from the Holy Land, she recently shared her advice for a long life: prayer without ceasing; love without constraint; abiding concern for others; an open door; no junk food; and, oh yes, nine golden raisins soaked in gin every day as a tonic.
“I found the recipe in a cathedral in Honolulu years ago, and I have followed it ever since. It’s supposed to cure anything that is wrong,” DeClerck said.