To honor the oldest living woman in the United States, officials in Harlem, New York, threw her a neighborhood-wide birthday bash. Also, from now on, July 6, her birthday, will be recognized as "Alelia Murphy Appreciation Day."
Alelia Murphy has just celebrated her 114th birthday and there just seems to be many more to come for her. But, this year's celebrations were truly special for her, according to reports by CNN. To honor the oldest living woman in the United States, officials in Harlem, New York, threw her a neighborhood-wide birthday bash. They also gave her a pretty unique gift: from now on, July 6, her birthday, will be recognized as "Alelia Murphy Appreciation Day." State Senator Brian Benjamin presented Murphy with a with a framed poster and a copy of the declaration!
OLDEST LIVING AMERICAN: Alelia Murphy celebrated her 114th birthday Saturday. She credits her long life to her trust in God and being a good person ❤️ pic.twitter.com/jIRfPlC0tY— CBS News (@CBSNews) July 6, 2019
During his speech, he called Murphy a "Harlem landmark" and he thanked her for her contributions to the community. "This is Harlem history, this is the family history we are standing here with a Harlem landmark, a Harlem icon - Mrs. Alelia Murphy," he said. We all know of the term "centenarian" for someone who has crossed 100, but Murphy is a "super-centenarian" as she's crossed110.
Happiest of birthdays Ms. Murphy, may you have a healthy year full of blessings.— Lanie Easto (@easto_lanie) July 7, 2019
Even though Murphy was born in North Carolina in 1905, she moved to Harlem in 1926 and has called it her home ever since, when she moved to the Manhattan borough during the peak of its cultural renaissance. She then became a local icon, thanks to years of involvement with community organizations and the church. She lost her husband in 1953, and for most of her life as a widow, she supported her kids as a seamstress.
"I'm so proud of her and so glad to have her as long as I have had," said Rose Green, Murphy's daughter, according to CNN affiliate WPIX. Green also mentioned that she calls her mom or sees her on a daily basis because she is her best friend. "My grandmother, her strength I don't know where she gets it from but she has been through so many things, she is the glue that holds this family together," one of her granddaughters, Nefer Nekhet said.
Can you even begin to imagine the changes & history this woman has seen? We had a great aunt who died at 110 three years ago who remembered when the Titanic went down in 1912.— Richard Gold (@rgold2_) July 8, 2019
"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 also added that the 114-year-old has no ailments and is well aware that she is the oldest living American. "She's excited, she said she must be blessed because the Lord kept her here for so long."
Family, friends, and well wishers sing Happy 114th Birthday to Alelia Murphy, the oldest living American and the mother of 1199SEIU retiree Rosa Green. #happybirthday #supercentenarian pic.twitter.com/qmuO5UIgnw— 1199SEIU Caregivers (@1199SEIU) July 5, 2019
When asked what is her secret to living a long life, Mrs. Murphy has said simply "Trust in God and be a good person." Murphy's age was verified by the Gerontology Research Group. She trails the oldest person in the world, Kane Tanaka of Japan, by two years and 185 days. At the party, Murphy, looking like a true queen, was dressed in a yellow dress and a crown. She greeted partygoers from her wheelchair at the celebration hosted by the African American Caucus of 1199SEIU, a union of healthcare workers. May she have more birthdays to celebrate!
A user named Robin Tolley took to Twitter to wish her: Awesome life story. All glory to God, who makes all things possible for those who believe and hold onto their faith with conviction. Ms. Alecia is a model of faith, grace, and humbleness. Another user @tb6953 wrote: About time I see good things happen to a good person! She will be an angel to spread Love to a world that will need. her help! God Bless Happy Birthday.
Let’s wish this beautiful queenhappy blessed birthday. Ms. Alelia Murphy turns 114 years old today. She was born July 6, 1905 in North Carolina , now lives in the village of Harlem. Stay blessed. She is stated to be the oldest living person in the U.S. #queen #centenarian pic.twitter.com/eBG9HGgGXw— NYPD Guardians Assoc (@GuardiansNYPD) July 6, 2019