In early March she celebrated her 113th birthday with family. It would be the last time that the oldest woman in Spain saw her family. Shortly after, the virus hit hard in Spain. Many retirement homes were hit hard by corona.
María also lives in a retirement home in Olot. Remarkably, she had few complaints when she tested positive for Covid-19 in April.
She was isolated from the outside world for weeks. She only had telephone contact with her family. “She was very bored,” says her daughter Rosa.
In her exceptionally long life, it is not the first setback she has to deal with. Daughter of a Spanish journalist, María was born in San Francisco in 1907, but moved to Spain during the First World War. Spanish flu broke out in 1918 and the Spanish Civil War from 1936 to 1939. María’s daughter says she has always been healthy. “She never even broke anything.”
The family is relieved to have survived corona. “Now she is healthy, she wants to talk. She is old again,” her daughter writes on her mother’s Twitter account.
María herself says that it is going well, “despite minor inconveniences that everyone can have.” And she thanks the staff of the retirement home. “The people are very nice and thoughtful.”
The number 23 on the list of oldest people in the world has three children, eleven grandchildren and thirteen great-grandchildren. Her family is looking forward to visiting María again.