Jeanne Louise Calment was born on February 21, 1875 in Arles, France. Some of her close
family lived to old age too: Her older brother, Francoi, lived to be 97. He Her father, Nicolas
Calment lived to 93. Her mother, Margureite Gilles lived to be 86. Jeanne Calment met
Vincent Van Gogh when she was 13 in 1888. He came into her uncle's store to buy paints. In
1896, when Jeanne Calment was 21, she married her second cousin (grandson of her great uncle),
Fernand Nicolas Calment. He died in 1942 after he ate a dessert with spoiled cherries.
They only had one child, Yvonne Marie Nicolle Calment who was born in 1898 and died of
pneumonia in 1934. Jeanne and Fernand had a grandchild, Fredric Billiot who was born in
1926 and died in a motorcycle accident in 1963. When Calment was 85 she took up fencing.
She rode a bicycle up until age 100. She was moved into a nursing home in 1985 aged 110
after a cooking accident which started a small fire in her flat. She was able to walk up until age
114 when she had a fall that fracturd her femur and required surgery. After the operation,
Calment needed to use a wheelchair. In 1994, she weighed 99lbs (45kg). Shortly before her
116th birthday, she got the flu. She smoked until she was 117. She started smoking at age 21
in 1896. She smoked no more than two cigarettes per day. She quit because her vision got
poor and she couldn't light the cigarette and didn't want to ask other people to do it for her.
She liked to eat chocolate. She ate it until her doctors persuaded her to give up sweets at age
119. She died on August 4, 1997 at age 122 years, 164 days old. Jeanne Calment ascribed
her longevity to olive oil. She put in in foods and rubbed it on her skin. She also ascribed her
longevity to a diet of drinking port wine and eating one kilogram of chocolate per day.