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The Secret to Long Life Is That It Feels Short / Nick Ehrhardt

The Secret to Long Life Is That It Feels Short

Misao Okawa (AP Photo | Kyodo News)

Misao Okawa, the world's oldest living person according to Guinness World Records, died of natural causes April 1, 2015, at age 117 years, 27 days in Osaka, Japan. She'd held the record since June 12, 2013, after the death of fellow countryman Jiroemon Kimura at age 115.

She was the subject of many interviews during her later years. When asked about the secret to long life she replied, "I wonder about that, too." She attributed some of her longevity to getting plenty of sleep, eating mackerel sushi at least once a month and knowing how to relax.

Wearing a pink kimono and matching daisy hairpin, she appeared on national television for her birthday last month. Surrounded by several generations of family and government officials, she told the audience she was "very happy" to be 117.

She seemed to be unfazed by witnessing so much history. The daughter of a kimono-maker lived through two world wars, four Japanese emperors and 20 U.S. Presidents.

"It seemed rather short," was her reply when asked how she felt about the past 117 years.

"She went so peacefully, as if she had just fallen asleep," nursing home employee Tomohiro Okada relayed to the media, "We miss her a lot."