A Houston resident recently marked her 114th birthday, solidifying her status as the oldest living individual in Texas and one of the most senior individuals in the entire United States. However, for Elizabeth Francis, age holds little significance.
When asked about her feelings on reaching 114, she responded to ABC affiliate KTRK-TV by saying, “I don’t know. I just thank the good Lord for keeping me.”
On her special day, Francis sported a tiara and celebrated with five generations of her family by her side. This included her 94-year-old daughter, Dorothy Williams, and 68-year-old granddaughter, Ethel Harrison. The gift of longevity appears to be a family trait.
Norwegian filmmakers and a Florida-based researcher attended the event to document the festivities. During an interview with a reporter, the Houston native shared some of her longevity secrets. Despite her age, Francis does not smoke or drink and claims to eat “everything.”
Harrison disclosed that her grandmother had a consistent penchant for preparing meals at home. She elaborated in an interview with KTRK-TV, stating, “She would cultivate her own vegetables in the rear garden. I never witnessed her visiting any fast food establishments… such as Chick-fil-A and all the other places I used to frequent. It was something she simply didn’t do.”
Harrison further commented, “No matter when you visited her residence, even on weekdays, she would be in the kitchen preparing a meal. I believe that also played a significant role. It was about how she prioritized her health and similar aspects.”
Francis came into the world on July 25, 1909, a time when President William Taft held office. According to LongeviQuest, an organization dedicated to tracking super-centenarians, she entered this world in Louisiana before relocating to Houston during her childhood. During the 1970s and the early ’80s, she held the role of overseeing the coffee shop operations at KTRK-TV.
Throughout her life journey, faith and family have been the cornerstones for Francis. She is a proud grandmother of three, great-grandmother of five, and great-great-grandmother of four. Her sister, Bertha Johnson, passed away at the age of 106 in 2011, according to LongeviQuest.
Dorothy, her daughter, expressed her astonishment: “It’s hard to believe, but it’s a blessing. Because she has been a wonderful mother and grandmother to all of us. She has been our backbone.”