Margaret Sowma
Margaret Sowma
Birth: 25 April 1915
New London, Connecticut, USA
Death: 10 January 2021
Los Angeles, California, USA
Age: 105 years, 260 days
Country: United StatesUSA

Margaret Sowma (25 April 1915 – 10 January 2021) was an American centenarian who, at the age of 105, was one of the oldest known victims of the COVID-19 pandemic.


Margaret Sowma was born in New London, Connecticut, USA on 25 April 1915, the first children born to recently immigrated parents from the Bakaal Valley of Lebanon and Damascus, Syria. She had two younger brothers Joe and George.

Her family soon moved to Clifton New Jersey where Margaret graduated the top student from her 8th grade class in 1928. She worked as a seamstress working in factories sewing garments. During the World War II, she became active in the USO helping to entertain soldiers who were far from home and getting ready to deploy overseas. She lost her brother Joe in 1944 during a training flight for the U.S. Navy.

After the World War II, the family moved to Los Angeles in 1948 to make a new start. Margaret continued her career in the garment industry in Los Angeles, becoming an organizer and active member in the garment union for many years. She retired in 1980 and began her second career of volunteering and activism. At the age of 79, in a show of solidarity, she chained herself to a sewing machine outside a garment factory to protest poor wages and working conditions, and was arrested for her efforts.

Margaret Sowma died from COVID-19, just days before she was set to receive a vaccine at St. John of God Retirement and Care Center in Los Angeles, California, USA on 10 January 2021 at the age of 105 years, 260 days.


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