|Birth:||1 January 1899|
Foshan, Guangdong, Qing dynasty (now China)
|Death:||16 November 2009|
Foshan, Guangdong, China
|Age:||110 years, 319 days|
Qian Xingrong claimed to have been born on 1 January 1899 in the south of Sanshui District, Foshan, Guangdong, Qing dynasty (now China). Her parents married her to a man at age 16 in Zhangbian Village. She had four sons and two daughters, including Zhang Peizhen [Chinese: 张佩贞] (aged 80 in 2009); as of 2009, they all live in different places.
Qian was widowed at age 34. She must raise her children alone; she needed to be thrifty, and worked in the fields to feed them (although she hadn't many fields). She hadn't fear of dogged work. During the peak times, she helped people with their work in the fields, and during the off-peak times, she was a door-to-door newspaper seller. The house where she lived with her family was rent. Four families shared the same bathroom, and Qian waited everyone has taken a shower before taking one. She cleaned the pathes, no matter if it was her family or another family who got it dirty.
Qian was optimistic and never quarrel with others. In the same way, she would educate her children to be humans, and often repeated them: "Be altruistic, don't be greedy, don't quarrel with others and work with your own strength." Her daughter Zhang Peizhen said that her mother "had a very kind heart."
During the Sino-Japanese war, three of her sons (the oldest children, the second one and the sixth one) were separated because of chaos. Before the liberation, Qian harvested cereals on six parts of her fields, and vegetables on two parts of her fields, but in the most difficult times, they only could eating straw. After the New China's foundation, she still was able to work: her sons could gain 10 work points by day, and she could gain 9 work points by day.
At age 55, she moved in her daughter Zhang Peizhen's house, and helped her to raise her four daughters.
Since 2000, Qian lived in the "nursing home" of Sanshui District. In 2006, her daughter Zhang Peizhen moved with her to take care of her mother, and deliver porridge to elderly people. Qian was very appreciated by the staff, who considered her as a "living treasure."
In 2009, Qian was reported to be the oldest living person in Sanshui District, Foshan, Guangdong, China. At that time, she was reported to being lively, and to always willing participate to activities.
When asked about the secret of her longevity, Qian replied: "I think that no matter to what point it's difficult to be an human, we must be happy and be optimistic in the life."
Qian liked cleanliness. She changed her clothes regularly, and took baths two times a day (at morning and at evening). Because she didn't like cold food like watermelon, she rarely ate it. Qian also pays attention to making exercises, even if she's drinking tea. She was very autonomous, and didn't let the nurses helping her for meals, showers and laundry. Her cinnabar hands were an indicator of her good blood circulation.
On 14 August 2009, Qian fell and had some stitches at head. Because her children insisted, she allowed the nurses to help her in her daily life. Some days before her death, Qian was noticed to be "coming back in the light", like if she got a new lease of life: her eyesight improved, and her earlobes were becoming smaller. Her children and grandchildren came quickly from Hong Kong and Hunan, and everyone took a family photo. The day of her death, the photo arrived. At 7:40 p.m., Zhang Peizhen fed her mother in her bed.
Qian died in Sanshui District, Foshan, Guangdong, China at 8 p.m. on 16 November 2009, at the age of 110 years, 319 days. Following her death, 108-year-old Deng Fu (male) became the oldest living person in Sanshui District.