Lucile Randon in 2019 at the age of 115
|Birth:||11 February 1904|
Ales, Gard, Occitanie, France
|Age:||117 years, 218 days|
Lucile Randon (born 11 February 1904), known as Sister Andre [French: Sœur André], is a French supercentenarian who is the oldest known living person in Europe and the second-oldest validated living person in the world, behind Kane Tanaka of Japan. Her age has been validated by the Gerontology Research Group.
Randon, who has been a nun for over 75 years, is the oldest living nun in the world, as well as the oldest nun ever recorded. At the age of 117 years, 218 days, she is currently the second-oldest French person, and the second-oldest European person ever recorded, after Jeanne Calment.
Randon is also the oldest person confirmed to have survived COVID-19, recovering from the disease at the age of 116 after an outbreak at her retirement home in early 2021.
Childhood and Religion
Lucile Randon was born on 11 February 1904 in Ales, Occitanie region, France to Paul Randon and Alphonsine Delphine Yeta Randon (nee Soutol).
Randon was born in a set of twins, however, her twin sister Lydie died at the age of 18 months. Randon almost died alongside her sister, which her doctor predicted would happen, but managed to recover.
Randon remembers her two brothers returning from World War I in 1918, one of them seriously injured, when she was 14. She later stated in an interview that it was the happiest day of her life.
Randon grew up in a Protestant family; her paternal grandfather was a pastor. Randon converted to Catholicism at the age of 27, and at the age of 40, she became a nun in the congregation of the Sisters of Saint-Vincent-de-Paul in Paris, taking the name of Sister Andre in homage to her older brother.
Career and Later Life
Randon worked as a teacher and a governess for various families, including the Peugeot family who founded the French car manufacturer. She also looked after children during World War II. After the war, she spent 28 years working with orphans and elderly people at a hospital in Vichy, Auvergne-Rhone-Alpes region. She then spent three decades living in a nursing home located in Savoie, Auvergne-Rhone-Alpes.
At the age of 91, in 1995, Randon suffered a heart attack which required surgery on her carotid artery.
In 2009, Randon moved to a retirement home in Toulon, Provence-Alpes-Cote d'Azur region, France from Savoie, Auvergne-Rhone-Alpes. In 2010, Randon said it was to get closer to her familial roots in the region, saying she was a Toulonnais by blood.
At the time of her 115th birthday, Randon was asked about her secret to her longevity, she said that she did not have a secret, but believed God wanted her to live the years that her late twin sister didn't get to live, citing when she had almost died as a baby and again aged 91.
In 2019, she was made an honorary citizen of the city and received a letter from Pope Francis. Randon is blind, partially deaf, and uses a wheelchair.
On 16 January 2021, Randon tested positive for COVID-19 during an outbreak which saw 53 out of the 90 residents of her retirement home infected with the disease. Randon was kept in isolation in her room, and did not suffer any symptoms other than feeling tired. On 8 February, just days before her 117th birthday, it was reported that she had recovered, making her the oldest confirmed survivor of the disease. When asked by a journalist if she was afraid to have COVID-19, she answered: "No, I wasn't afraid, because I wasn't afraid to die." She went on to celebrate her 117th birthday on 11 February.
Randon became the oldest known living nun in the world following the death of 115-year-old Marie-Josephine Gaudette of Italy. Randon subsequently became the oldest ecclesiastical person ever recorded after surpassing Gaudette's age of 115 years, 110 days on 2 June 2019. Randon is also the first and only nun to turn 116 and 117.
Randon became the oldest living person in France (and in Provence-Alpes-Cote d'Azur region) following the death of 114-year-old Honorine Rondello on 19 October 2017. Following the death of 114 year-old Gabrielle des Robert on 3 December 2018, Randon has been the last surviving French person born in 1904.
On 11 February 2019, Randon celebrated her 115th birthday, becoming the third person in the history of France to verifiably reach this age, after Jeanne Calment and Marie Bremont. Since surpassing Bremont's final age of 115 years, 42 days on 26 March 2019, Randon has been the second-oldest French person ever documented, behind only Calment, who lived to 122. Randon became the second French person to verifiably reach the age of 116 on 11 February 2020 and 117 on 11 February 2021.
Following the death of fellow Frenchwoman Gabrielle Valentine des Robert on 3 December 2018, Randon became the last known person in Europe born in 1904. She subsequently became the oldest living person in Europe, as well as the last known European born before 1905, following the death of 116-year-old Italian Maria Giuseppa Robucci on 18 June 2019.
On 11 February 2020, Randon became the sixth recorded European to verifiably reach the age of 116. Since surpassing Robucci's final age of 116 years, 90 days on 12 May 2020, Randon has been the third-oldest European ever recorded, after Jeanne Calment and Emma Morano. On 11 February 2021, she became the third recorded European to verifiably reach the age of 117, after Calment and Morano.
Since the death of Maria Giuseppa Robucci on 18 June 2019, Randon has been the world's second-oldest living person whose age is validated by the GRG, behind only Kane Tanaka. She was previously believed to have been the world's last known validated person born in 1904; this has no longer been the case since Francisca Celsa dos Santos's validation by the GRG on 9 July 2020.
Since surpassing Tane Ikai's final age of 116 years, 175 days on 5 August 2020, Randon has been in the top-15 oldest people ever whose ages have been validated by the GRG.
On 24 January 2021, Randon surpassed Maria Capovilla's final age of 116 years, 347 days and became one of the top-10 oldest people ever whose ages have been validated by the GRG.
On 11 February 2021, Randon celebrated her 117th birthday, making her the 10th person overall in history to reach this age.
- RENCONTRE AVEC SOEUR ANDRÉE 116 ANS, DOYENNE DE L'EUROPE ET VICE-DOYENNE DE L’HUMANITÉ Racine Solaire on YouTube, 30 August 2020
- Gerontology Research Group
- Lucile RANDON Geneanet
- Lucile Randon, 106 Ans Rayonnants Var-Martin, February 2010
- Soeur André fête ses 112 ans Var-matin, 12 February 2016
- La doyenne des Français est une religieuse de 113 ans ! Le Jour du Seigneur, 27 October 2017
- France: The Oldest Nun in the World Society of Saint Pius X, 14 November 2017
- ‘The good Lord has guided me well’: 113-year-old nun reflects on blessings Crux, 26 November 2017
- La doyenne des Français est née à Alès en 1904 Midi Libre, 12 February 2018
- Doyenne des Français, sœur André fête ses 114 ans ! Aleteia, 12 February 2018
- Sœur André a 115 ans aujourd'hui et deux souhaits France Inter, 11 February 2019
- L'Europe a une nouvelle doyenne : la Française Lucile Randon, âgée de 115 ans France Info, 16 August 2019
- Toulon : Soeur André, doyenne d’Europe fête ses 116 ans France Info, 12 February 2020
- The World’s Oldest Nun Celebrates 116th Birthday – Here’s Her Secret to Happiness ChurchPop, 13 February 2020
- Aujourd'hui #SœurAndré (presque) 117 ans... ehpadscl on Instagram, 10 November 2020
- À Toulon, l'Ehpad de la doyenne des Européens confirme que plus de la moitié de ses résidents sont positifs à la Covid-19 Var-Martin, 18 January 2021
- Sœur André, 116 ans et doyenne des Français, a vaincu le coronavirus BFM TV, 9 February 2021
- À 117 ans, la doyenne européenne a vaincu le Covid-19 Le Point, 8 February 2021
- French nun, Europe's oldest person, beats Covid-19 on eve of 117th birthday France 24, 9 February 2021
- Europe's oldest person turns 117 after defeating Covid-19 Daily Sabah, 11 February 2021
- Merci pour tous les messages de joyeux anniversaire que vous avez adressés à Sœur André. EHPAD Sainte Catherine Labouré on Facebook, 11 February 2021
- Merci aux élèves de la classe de français de l’école américaine alterknights pour ces magnifiques cartes envoyées à l’occasion des 117 ans de soeurandré ehpadscl (Instagram), 3 March 2021
- De la Première Guerre mondiale au Foyer Notre-Dame, la vie de Sœur André, 117 ans Le Dauphine, 10 July 2021
|France's Oldest Living Person Titleholders (V • T • E)|
Desiree Delory • Ferdinise Nebolle • Unknown • Georgette Jeanmaire • Unknown • Laurence Entiope • Marie-Ernestine Compain • Marie-Virginie Duhem • Frederique Noel • Augustine Tessier • Elisa Esnault • Eugenie Roux • Jeanne Calment • Marie-Helene Chanteperdrix • Jeanne Dumaine • Marie Bremont • Germaine Haye • Anne Primout • Camille Loiseau • Marie-Simone Capony • Clementine Solignac • Eugenie Blanchard • Maria Diaz • Marcelle Narbonne • Marie-Therese Bardet • Paule Bronzini • Irenise Moulonguet • Suzanne Burrier • Marie Liguinen • Olympe Amaury • Eudoxie Baboul • Elisabeth Collot • Honorine Rondello • Lucile Randon