World's oldest person dies in California at age 115

Friday, September 11, 2009

Gertrude Baines at her 115th birthday party

Gertrude Baines, the world's oldest person, died aged 115 in Los Angeles, California on Friday. The suspected cause of death is heart failure.

"She passed away this morning at 07.25 [14.25 UTC]," said administrator Emma Camanag of the Western Convalescent Hospital.

Baines, who was born on April 6, 1894, became the world's oldest person in January this year, after Maria de Jesus, a Portuguese woman, died aged 115.

Charles Witt, Baines' doctor, said, "she told me that she owes her longevity to the Lord, that she never did drink, she never did smoke and she never did fool around," according to the Agence France- Presse news agency.

"She was mentally alert. She smiled frequently," he said.

The oldest person in the world is now Kama Chinen, a woman from Japan.