Wednesday 20 September 2017

'No alcohol, cigarettes or husbands' are the keys to long life for singing Susan (105)

Susan Jackson celebrated her 105th brithday
Susan Jackson celebrated her 105th brithday

Ryan Nugent

She has lived through the 1916 Rising and was alive before the Titanic was built - but Dublin's oldest citizen still sings Molly Malone with as much verve as ever, at the impressive age of 105.

Susan Jackson, from Maryland in the Liberties, has still not grown tired of blowing out candles and even had a special celebration at the Mansion House with Dublin's first citizen, Lord Mayor Brendan Carr.

Never married, Susan told the Herald that the key to her long life has been healthy living.

"No, never in my life [have I drunk alcohol or smoked cigarettes]. I wouldn't take it off anyone," she said.

"I couldn't [marry]. They were all married but me," she said, referring to her large family of six brothers and three sisters.

Cllr Carr joked that he could not get Susan to stop singing when she visited the Mansion House, and she assured the Herald this was true.

"I'll sing more for you," she said. "It was very good. We had a lovely time."

Her nephew, Independent city councillor Vincent Jackon, said Susan is an inspiration to everyone in the way she embraces life.

She lived in her own home around the corner from the Guinness Storehouse until two years ago when she broke her leg and hip and moved into Cherry Orchard Hospital.

That was despite an attack and burglary at her home when she was 99.

"Two fellas pulled her out of the bed and robbed her in the house," Mr Jackson said.

"She's got the most unbelievable faith I've ever seen.

"She actually felt sorry for the ones that robbed her. She said 'God forgive them'.

"It's great for us that she was able to forgive because if she didn't she'd have become a recluse and stopped doing the things she liked doing.

"She didn't stop going to the daycare centre for two days a week and popping to the shops."

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