105-year-old who recovered from COVID-19 credits gin-soaked raisins for breakfast

A 105-year-old New Jersey woman who survived both the 1918 flu pandemic and a bout with the coronavirus attributed her longevity to her daily ritual of eating nine raisins soaked in gin.

“Fill a jar. Nine raisins a day after it sits for nine days,” Lucia DeClerck told The New York Times

Gin-soaked raisins are not among the recommended Centers for Disease Control and Prevention treatments for the virus.

DeClerck, born in Hawaii to Guatemalan and Spanish parents, eventually retired to a Manahawkin retirement community at 90. She learned she had tested positive for the virus on Jan. 25, her 105th birthday and the day after receiving her second dose of Pfizer’s coronavirus vaccine.

However, administrator Michael Neiman said she experienced few symptoms and was back to her room and usual routine within two weeks. On Monday, Gov. Phil Murphy (D) said during a news briefing that he had had an “uplifting” phone conversation with her.

DeClerck’s son Phillip Laws, 78, said he was “very concerned” when he learned of her diagnosis, “but she’s got a tenacity that is unbelievable,” he added. “And she’s got that rosary — all the time.”

“At first she was a little apprehensive, a little scared, but she said, ʻGod will protect me,’” Neiman told the Times.

Although she likely contracted the virus before receiving her second dose of the vaccine, the shot also likely contributed to DeClerck’s recovery, as British studies have indicated even a single dose reduces the chance of hospitalization.

“Now all of us are rushing out and getting Mason jars and yellow raisins and trying to catch up,” DeClerck’s 53-year-old granddaughter, Shawn Laws O’Neil, who has dubbed her grandmother “the 105-year-old badass who kicked COVID,” told the Times.

Tags Coronavirus Gin Raisin

The Hill has removed its comment section, as there are many other forums for readers to participate in the conversation. We invite you to join the discussion on Facebook and Twitter.

Most Popular

Load more


See all Video