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Maria Branyas Morera
Maria Branyas Morera
Branyas Morera on her 113th birthday in 2020
Birth: 4 March 1907
San Francisco, California, USA
Age: 115 years, 157 days
Country: United StatesUSASpainESP
Validated

Maria Branyas Morera (born 4 March 1907) is an American-Spanish supercentenarian whose age is validated by Gerontology Research Group (GRG). She is currently the oldest living person in Spain, as well as the oldest living American-born person. She is also among the oldest people known to have survived COVID-19, which she contracted at the age of 113 in April 2020.

Biography

Maria Branyas Morera was born in San Francisco, California, USA on 4 March 1907. Her family emigrated to San Francisco in 1906. They later traveled to New Orleans, from here they departed to Olot, Catalonia, Spain in 1915. While emigrating to Spain aboard the Catalania, Branyas Morera injured her eardrum in a fall, resulting in her permanently losing hearing in one ear. Towards the end of the voyage, Branyas Morera's father, Joseph Branyas Julia, died from pulmonary tuberculosis at the age of 37, leaving Branyas Morera's mother to raise the family of five on her own.

Branyas Morera married in 1931, and had three children.

In 2000, when she was 93, Branyas Morera moved into a care home in Olot. At the age of 110, she reportedly still read the newspaper every day. As of August 2019, she had 11 grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren.

Branyas Morera is deaf in one ear, and partially deaf in the other, with precautions taken at her nursing home. This made communication difficult, but using a voice-to-text device, her relatives are able to communicate fluently.

COVID-19 Survival

In April 2020, at the age of 113, Branyas Morera tested positive for COVID-19, but successfully recovered. She was the oldest recorded survivor of the disease until Lucile Randon, then 116, of France recovered in 2021. In a subsequent interview with the Observer, Branyas Morera called for a revolution in treatment of the elderly, saying “This pandemic has revealed that older people are the forgotten ones of our society. They fought their whole lives, sacrificed time and their dreams for today’s quality of life. They didn’t deserve to leave the world in this way.”

In January 2021, Branyas Morera received both doses of the COVID-19 vaccine, making her one of the oldest validated supercentenarians to get vaccinated.

Longevity Records

On 22 December 2019, Branyas Morera became the oldest known living person in Spain following the death of Josefa Santos Gonzalez. She became the last (known) living person in Spain born in 1907, following the death of Virtudes Tomas Navarro on 20 April 2020.

She became the last (known) living person in Europe born in 1907, following the death of Marie-Louise Berthelot on 16 January 2021.

Aside from being the oldest living validated person in Spain, Branyas Morera is also the oldest person ever born in the U.S. state of California, as well as the second-oldest living validated emigrant in the world, behind Tekla Juniewicz. She is also the third-oldest validated living person in Europe and the world, behind Lucile Randon and Tekla Juniewicz.

She became the last person living in Spain born in the 1900's decade, following the death of Saturnino de la Fuente Garcia on 18 January 2022.

She became the oldest validated living American-born person, following the death of Thelma Sutcliffe on 17 January 2022, as well as the the oldest validated living person born in the Americas, following the death of Antonia da Santa Cruz on 23 January 2022.

She became the third-oldest validated living person in the world, following the death of Kane Tanaka on 19 April 2022.

She became the last surviving validated emigrant born in 1907, following the death of Casilda Benegas on 28 June 2022.

Since the death of Sofia Rojas on 30 July 2022, Branyas Morera is one of only three validated people born in 1907 who is still living (the others being Fusa Tatsumi and Bessie Hendricks).

She is currently the second-oldest validated person ever to live in Spain, behind Ana Vela-Rubio.

Gallery

References


Spain's Oldest Living Person Titleholders (VE)

Josefa Salas Mateo • Policarpa Perez Exposito • Josefa Llovet Llovet • Ramona Agudin-Fernandez • Antonia Diaz Garcia • Soledad Munoz • Salustiano Alvarez • Isabel Guijarro • Telesfora de la Torre-Mendizabal • Paulina Garcia-Lozano • Maria Villar TrespalaciosAurelio Diaz • A. L. M. • Galo Leoz-Ortin • Maria Antonia Castro • Maria del Carmen Lopez • Gregorio Merino • Gabriela Izquierdo • F. M. M. • Antonio Urrea-Hernandez • Maria Esperanza Onieva • Joan Riudavets-Moll • Jorja Hernando • Victoriana Vazquez Barrero • Lucia Madaria-Vesga • Manuela Fernandez-Fojaco • Teresa Dosaigues Abella • Andresa Guerrero-Ortiz • Felipa Gutierrez • Rosa Martinez • Francisco Fernandez • Francisca Garcia-Torres • Ana Vela-Rubio • Francisco Nunez Olivera • Josefa Santos Gonzalez • Maria Branyas Morera

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