August 01, 2019
On Wednesday, a centenarian woman celebrated her birthday in the Bronx. She also gave out her secrets for staying alive so long and one of them was quite funny.
Louise Jean Signore turned 107 and she had the pleasure of having a party thrown for her at the Bartow Community Center in Co-op City. The centenarian was born in 1912 when President William Howard Taft was in office and Woodrow Wilson won the November election.
It was also the same year that the Titanic hit an iceberg and sunk in the Atlantic Ocean. Signore was born in Harlem, Manhattan and has lived in the Bronx since she was 14.
Her birthday party was attended by more than 100 people but the special lady honestly doesn’t get what the fuss is about anymore. She jokingly complained: “I said I’ve had enough parties.”
Her friend Deborah Whitaker shared about her: “She’s got no walking cane, no wheelchair. She does all her shopping.
The Italian elderly woman still lives alone and credits that as one of her longevity secrets. She explained: “I think the secret of 107: I never got married. I think that’s the secret. My sister says ‘I wish I never got married.'”
It appears her family just has the right genes as her sister is 102 but unfortunately couldn’t attend Signore’s party. Her mother lived to be 97 and her three brothers, including twins, died in their mid-90s.
The centenarian also stays fit in whatever way she can. She shared that she exercised, danced “a little,” and after her lunch, she would go and play bingo.
Another secret to a long life was not taking medication except “a high blood pressure pill.” However, age still caught up with her as she’s legally blind and recently overcame pneumonia.
When she was 103 Signore survived an assault and robbery in her apartment building. At the time, the person who attacked her knocked her to the ground and stole $35, two meals, a magnifying glass, and a pack of bingo cards.
However, that didn’t stop Signore from living her best life and she chose to still go out. One more word of advice for those hoping to reach her age the elderly woman noted: “Italian food. Italian food is very good for you.”
She added: “I was brought up with very good food. No soda, no cake.” The centenarian has lived through 18 different presidents in the US.
Signore worked as an administrative assistant for New York's public transport operators, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) until she was 65. She only retired in 1977.
Last year, Signore had her 106th birthday party at the senior center. At the time she’d admitted that getting to her age was a surprise and quite daunting.
“I never thought I would get to this. When I first started coming to the center, there was a woman who was 100 years old. I said, ‘Oh, my gosh, she’s 100!’ And here, I’m 106.”