Gogo celebrates 117 years and hopes for more to come

2011-08-04 00:00

SHE has lived for over a century and she hopes she gets to see more years to come.

Ellen Shandu from Dendethu celebrated her 117th birthday last Friday during the Golden Games in the Mandeni Municipality.

The annual Golden Games, arranged by the Department of Sports and Recreation, sees the elderly competing in sports.

Mandeni Municipality public participation and communication officer, Thandinkosi Zulu, said during the investigation they could not obtain “Gogo’s original dompas” but they believe she is 117 because of events she can remember.

Shandu told The Witness that she is grateful to God that she has lived this long even though her health is frail. She said she loves reading the Bible and knows it very well.

Shandu’s oldest daughter, Tomalo Mbatha (71) said her mother’s younger sibling was 100 years old when he died.

“What I really admire with my mom is that she’s a woman of faith and she also taught me how to be a believer. Sometimes she doesn’t eat that much and her cup of tea spills because she’s wobbly, but it’s such an honour to share my life with her because she has taught me so much,” Mbatha said.

According to Wikipedia, the longest unambiguously documented human lifespan is that of Jeanne Calment from France who died at age 122 years and 164 days in 1997.

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