Alelia Murphy has been confirmed as the oldest living person in the United States. She just celebrated her 114th birthday on July 6th. She was honored by officials in Harlem, New York as they declared her birthday as “Alelia Murphy Appreciation Day” in the local community.
Dozens of people from the neighborhood gathered at her birthday celebration hosted by the African American Caucus of 1199SEIU, a union of health workers. State Sen. Brian Benjamin presented the declaration as well as a framed poster to Murphy. During his speech, Benjamin said Murphy is a “Harlem landmark” and thanked her for her contributions to the community.
Murphy was wearing bright yellow with a crown on her head as she greeted partygoers from her wheelchair. She didn’t speak at the event, but her family said that according to Murphy, her secret to long life is “being a good person” and faith in God.
Murphy, who was born in North Carolina in 1905, has been in Harlem since she moved there in 1926. She has been well-known in the community after being involved in several organizations and the church. Her husband died in 1953 and since then, she had to support her two children alone as a seamstress.
“She is the glue that holds this family together,” her granddaughter Nefer Nekhet told WPIX.
Murphy’s daughter, Rose Green, considers her mother her best friend. She said she is thankful that the last time they checked, Murphy doesn’t have any illnesses.
“I’m so proud of her and so glad to have her as long as I have,” Green said.
Murphy has been considered supercentenarian, with her age exceeding 110, as validated by the Gerontology Research Group. The oldest person in the world is Kane Tanaka from Japan, who is 116-years old.