Ann Nixon Cooper

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The Independent Online

Ann Nixon Cooper, who died on 21 December aged 107, was the Atlanta centenarian of whom President Barack Obama spoke in his election night speech.

Obama described Cooper, who died at home in the house she had lived since 1938, as an example of "the heartbreak and the hope", noting that she had lived long enough to remember when black people were not able to vote but was able to vote for the country's first black president. The Atlanta City councilman Ivory Young said he met her when running for office in 2001 and found her stories about Atlanta history mesmerising, while the former Atlanta Mayor Andrew Young recounted Cooper's legendary vibrancy, noting that she had taught senior citizens aerobics until she was 100.

Young recalled dancing at Cooper's 104th birthday party, chuckling at the memory of how she outperformed him. Cooper would have been 109 on 9 January.