Alelia Murphy, the oldest person in the United States, has died. She was 114.
“It is with great sadness that we share news of the passing of Mrs. Alelia Murphy,” healthcare union 1199SEIU Caregivers announced on Wednesday. Murphy was born in 1905 in North Carolina, and moved to Harlem in 1926.
“Mrs. Murphy was the oldest living American, having celebrated her 114th birthday in July, surrounded by her family, friends, community leaders, and members of our AFRAM Caucus,” the union said in their statement, shared on Facebook.
“Our deepest condolences are with Mrs. Murphy’s daughter, 1199SEIU Montefiore retiree Rose Green, and with the rest of their family during this difficult time,” the statement added.
Murphy celebrated her 114th birthday on July 6 in a celebration hosted by the African American Caucus of 1199SEIU, and her Harlem community named the day “Alelia Murphy Appreciation Day.”
At the celebration, State Sen. Brian Benjamin also presented Murphy with a framed poster and a copy of the declaration, CNN reported at the time.
“I’m so proud of her and so glad to have her as long as I have,” Green, Murphy’s daughter, told CNN at the time.
“She’s excited, she said she must be blessed because the Lord kept her here for so long,” Murphy’s granddaughter, Nefer Nekhet, said at the time to PIX11.
“We ask her, ‘Grandma, you been here for a very long time,’ and she said, ‘I’m here because you all don’t know how to live, I’m here to teach you all how to live and things to do!’” Nekhet added.
When Murphy was asked about her secret to such a long life, she simply said, “Trust in God and be a good person.”
A funeral service will be held for Murphy on Friday, December 6, at Harlem’s Prayer for All People, with the viewing taking place from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m., and a service immediately following.