Ireland's oldest person dies at 113 in New York

Ireland's oldest person, Kathleen Snavely, died yesterday aged 113 years and 140 days.

Kathleen, a Clare native who travelled to America in 1921, passed away in a care home in Syracuse, New York, on Monday morning. She was the 16th oldest person in the world.

Born in Feakle in February 1902, Kathleen made national headlines when she turned 113, and again in March, when she became the longest-lived Irish person of all time.

After arriving in Syracuse, Kathleen worked in a school for those with disabilities before founding a dairy with her first husband and becoming a successful businesswoman.

Writing for syracuse.com, journalist Sean Kirst notes that in the 2000s, she donated an incredible $1m to Syracuse University to develop the Whitman School of Management there.

"Not a penny was given to me," she is quoted as saying. "I'm giving them what I didn't get."

Kathleen has spent the last several years in The Centers at St Camullus nursing home, where she celebrated her most recent birthday. Friends recall that she maintained her sharp wit until her final days.

A memorial service is planned for July 14 in Syracuse, as St Patrick's Church.

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