105 year-old woman beats COVID with a lot of faith … and a little gin

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Lucia DeClerck enjoys cake on her 100th birthday on 25 January 2016. DeClerck recently recovered from COVID-19 after being diagnosed with the disease on her 105th birthday. Photo: CNS, Handout via Trenton Monitor

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.

Any tougher, and she’d rust: Lucia DeClerck, 105 and looking very cool, smiles at Mystic Meadows Rehab and Nursing Centre in New Jersey on 15 March 2021, after surviving COVID-19. Photo: CNS, Handout via Trenton Monitor

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.

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