115 Years Young: Meet The Oldest Living American

05/27/2014 at 07:45 AM EDT

America's Oldest Living Person 115-Year-Old Detroit Woman Jeralean Talley
Jeralean Talley, 115, of Inkster, Michigan
Elisha Anderson/Detroit Free Press/AP
A Detroit-area woman, a member of a select group of the living to have been born in the 19th century, celebrated a birthday on Friday. Her 115th.

Jeralean Talley, who was born May 23, 1899, went fishing last year and still gets around on her own with the help of a walker.

The Inkster resident plans to celebrate with family and friends at a local church on Sunday.

On her actual birthday – Friday – Talley planned to go to the doctor for a checkup, although she says she doesn't feel sick.

But Talley's knees occasionally hurt, her right hand shakes, she has a hard time hearing and her memory comes and goes.

115 Years Young: Meet The Oldest Living American| Birthday, Real People Stories

Talley is the oldest living American, according to the Gerontology Research Group

Kimberly P. Mitchell / Detroit Free Press / AP

Her answer as to why she has lived so long hasn't changed over the years.

"It's all in the good Lord's hands," Talley told the Detroit Free Press. "There's nothing I can do about it."



Talley is the oldest living American and the second-oldest person in the world, according to a list maintained by the Gerontology Research Group, which tracks the world's longest-living people.

The Gerontology Research Group verified Talley's age using census data. Japan resident Misao Okawa, 116, tops the list.

Talley, whose husband died in 1988, is cared for by a 76-year-old daughter who lives with her.

Five generations of the family are living in the area, including a great-great-grandson.



115 Years Young: Meet The Oldest Living American| Birthday, Real People Stories

Alexander Imich, the oldest man in the world

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