Elsie Thompson, was oldest person in United States

Elsie Thompson’s 113th birthday was celebrated.
D. Clifford/Tampa Bay Times
Elsie Thompson’s 113th birthday was celebrated.

CLEARWATER, Fla. — On the brink of her 114th birthday, the oldest person in the United States died peacefully in her condominium.

Elsie Calvert Thompson was born April 5, 1899, drawing her first breath during the administration of President William McKinley. She was the fourth-oldest person in the world.

Her 72-year-old son, George Thompson, her only child, said she died as he flew from California to see her. She had congestive heart failure.


‘‘She had such a big heart,’’ he said Sunday.

After Mrs. Thompson’s death on March 21, her family held a memorial service in Clearwater. Born just a year after the close of the Spanish-American War, Mrs. Thompson was a stylish dresser who practiced her ballroom dancing until shortly before she died. She also sang and played the piano.