Society

Woman, 117, Dies Hours After Receiving Birth Certificate

| by Karin Sun
Trinidad Alvarez Lira with her birth certificateTrinidad Alvarez Lira with her birth certificate

A 117-year-old Mexican woman died just hours after tracking down her birth certificate.

Trinidad Alvarez Lira of Mexico City, Mexico, had tried for years to obtain a copy of her birth certificate proving that she was born in 1898, The Guardian reported. The woman claimed that she hadn't received all of the government old age benefits that she was entitled to because she had no proof of her age.

According to officials in Mexico City's department of social development, the woman died of a heart attack on June 29. She reportedly passed away just a few hours after receiving the birth certificate, and had no time to cash a single check.

The Guardian article was posted to a Reddit discussion board on July 1 and has received nearly 2,000 replies in less than a day.

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Posters writing in the forum expressed their wonder at the woman's incredible lifespan.

"She sure has lived through a lot," one commentator wrote. "I mean, imagine living before cars and planes, where all they had were trains, boats, and horses, to die when they were landing people on the moon and leaving the solarsystem? That's just absolutely crazy."

"Being alive in three different centuries, how about that one?" another poster remarked.

Other commentators saw a moral lesson in the woman's story.  

"With medical advancements you may very well live to 117 and even longer," one poster wrote. "It is very plausible to think that you will witness the repercussions of the decisions you make today."

"I'm pretty sure the decisions I'm making today are why I won't live to 117," another user joked in response.

According to the Guinness Book of World Records, the oldest person to have ever lived was a French woman named Jeanne Calment, who was born in 1875 and lived for 122 years and 164 days. Calment died in a nursing home in Arles, France, on Aug. 4, 1997.  

Sources: The Guardian, Reddit, Guinness Book of World Records / Photo credit: Arsenal Diario Digital

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