Tanaka was born on this date in 1903. She has witnessed all of history’s major events over the course of a century and has seen the world change dramatically.

Kane Tanaka of Japan is the world’s oldest living person. According to a tweet from Junko Tanaka, her great-granddaughter, she turned 119 on Sunday. “Great feat. (Kane Tanaka) achieved 119 years of age,” the tweet read. “I hope you’ll continue to live life joyously and to the fullest,” she says, according to CNN. She last saw Tanaka in December. On the occasion of her 119th birthday, she was showered with gifts and well wishes.

According to The Guardian, Tanaka loves chocolates and celebrated her birthday with the staff at her nursing home in Fukuoka Prefecture, south-west Japan.


Junko posted a snapshot of two unique commemorative coco-cola bottles that the firm gifted her great-grandmother for her birthday on Twitter. Her name and age were printed on the labels of these bottles. Junko stated, “First birthday present: Introducing Kane’s birthday presents. This is a wonderful present. The Coca-Cola Company created a special birthday bottle. It appears that (Kane) is still consuming Coca-Cola.”

Tanaka was chosen to carry the Olympic torch in the run-up to the TOKYO 2020 Olympics, which were sadly postponed due to the pandemic. “I might be biased because I’m related to her, but I think it’s sort of great — I wanted to share it with the world and for others to feel inspired and to feel her delight,” Junko told CNN at the time.


Tanaka was born in 1903 and married when he was 19 years old. She worked at the family noodle store her entire life, until she was 103 years old. She has witnessed all of history’s major events over the course of a century. She has lived through two world wars, the Spanish Flu, and other changes in the world. She’s lived through five Japanese imperial governments and is looking forward to her 120th birthday next year. According to The Guardian, she was named the oldest person living in 2019 by the Guinness Book of World Records. Her grandson, Elji Tanaka, told to CNN “I don’t recall her mentioning anything about her history… She’s a very forward-thinking person who prefers to live in the moment.” Her family is ecstatic with her, claiming that she keeps her mind and body active by practicing math and remaining curious about the world.

Tanaka is one of a large number of persons in Japan that are over the age of 100. Japan’s health ministry estimated in September that the country has roughly 86,510 people aged 100 or older. Japan’s life expectancy is likewise at an all-time high, with women living an average of 87.74 years and males living an average of 81.64 years. However, this contrasts with the country’s low birth rate, which has continued to decline despite persistent attempts. Due to visitation limitations at her nursing facility, Tanaka did not get to meet any of her family members. She spent the day with the nursing staff, who say she enjoys playing board games and communicates with hand signals.

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