Long Beach, NY – A Long Beach nursing home resident believed to be the oldest living Jewish person in the world was the guest of honor yesterday at a gala celebration commemorating her 112th birthday.
For Goldie Steinberg, a resident of Grandell Rehabilitation and Nursing Center, yesterday’s event was a belated birthday party. Mrs. Steinberg’s actual birthday was on October 30th, the day after Hurricane Sandy decimated Long Beach, forcing the evacuation of all of the kosher nursing home’s residents for almost four weeks.
Despite her advanced age and her status as a super-centenarian, a designation given to those who attain the age of 110 or longer, Mrs. Steinberg is still alert, aware and engaging in as many activities as she can.
“Her mind is wonderful and she still tells me what to do,” daughter Ann Teicher told VIN News. “If she doesn’t like what I am wearing she tells me to throw it out and she is still crocheting blankets, shawls and scarves.”
Mrs. Steinberg, whose age has been verified by the Gerontology Research Group and is listed as the 24th oldest person in the world, was born in Moldova on October 30th 1900, the second youngest of eight children. She came to America at age 23 and worked as a seamstress until the age of 80.
“She worked hard her whole life,” recalled Mrs. Teicher. “We were poor, but she gave us everything.”
Mrs. Steinberg lived in the same third floor apartment in Bensonhurst for seventy two years before finally relocating to Grandell, in 2004 at age 104, after her feet gave out on her one Mother’s Day.
“She said to me ‘Ann, it’s time’,” said Mrs. Teicher. “We went to look at different places and she chose Grandell on her own.”
According to the nursing home administrator, Mrs. Steinberg reads the newspaper on a daily basis, speaks English, Yiddish, Hebrew and Russian and is a fan of the New York Yankees. Mrs. Steinberg is the last survivor of a pogrom an early 1900’s porgrom in Moldova and according to family lore the family survived the massacre by hiding in their cellar.
While Mrs. Steinberg had been hospitalized briefly a few weeks ago, nursing home staff was relieved to hear that she would be back in time for the previously scheduled party and Mrs. Steinberg insisted on having her hair done for the gala event.
When asked recently if she would consider remarrying, Mrs. Steinberg, who lost her husband in 1967 quipped, “I would, but I don’t know if at this age my children want a stepfather.”