French sister, world's second oldest person, survives COVID-19 at 116


In this image made from BFM TV video, Sr. Andre, born Lucile Randon, is interviewed by David Tavella, Communications Manager for the Sainte Catherine Laboure Nursing Home in Toulon, France, Tuesday Feb. 9, 2021. The nun is the second-oldest known living person in the world, according to the Gerontology Research Group, which validates details of people believed to be aged 110 or older. French media report that the nun tested positive for COVID-19 virus in mid-January but just three weeks later she is fit as a fiddle — albeit it in her regular wheelchair. (BFM TV via AP)

Paris — A 116-year-old French nun who is believed to be the world's second-oldest person has survived COVID-19 and is looking forward to celebrating her 117th birthday on Thursday.

The Gerontology Research Group, which validates details of people thought to be 110 or older, lists Frenchwoman Lucile Randon — Sr. André's birth name — as the second-oldest known living person in the world. 

French media report that Sr. André tested positive for the virus in mid-January in the southern French city of Toulon. But just three weeks later, the nun is considered recovered. 

"I didn't even realize I had it," she told French newspaper Var-Matin. 

Sr. André, who is blind and uses a wheelchair, did not even worry when she received her diagnosis. 

"She didn't ask me about her health, but about her habits," David Tavella, the communications manager for the care home where the nun, told the newspaper. "For example, she wanted to know if meal or bedtime schedules would change. She showed no fear of the disease. On the other hand, she was very concerned about the other residents."

Not all of the home's residents shared Sr. André's luck. In January, 81 of the 88 residents tested positive for the virus, and about 10 of them died, according to Var-Matin. 

Once doctors declared the nun no longer infected, she was allowed to attend Mass.

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