(JNS.org) The Jewish woman believed to have been the world’s oldest member of her religion, Goldie Steinberg, died this week in Long Beach, N.Y., at the age of 114.
Steinberg was born in 1900 in Chisinau (also known as Kishinev), a city in the Russian Empire that is now the capital of the Republic of Moldova. Before she even came to the U.S. as a child, she survived the 1903 Kishinev pogrom spurred by the death of a Christian boy and a blood libel against the city’s Jews, and another anti-Jewish massacre two years later. Steinberg was the last survivor of the two massacres. She came to the U.S. at the age of 23.
In addition to being the world's oldest Jewish woman, Steinberg was also the oldest person born in the Russian Empire and the second-oldest person living in the U.S. She is survived by four grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren.
"My grandmother’s life, surviving the pogroms, losing siblings in the Holocaust, it was a history lesson. She was a very selfless person; she always thought of others. She lived on her own in Bensonhurst until she was 104 and refused to move in with my mother because she didn’t want to be a burden on her. That tells you something about her,” said Peter Kutner, Steinberg's grandson, Chabad.org reported.
On the day of Steinberg’s death, Kutner was notified that she felt ill and traveled to her nursing home with his mother, where they were able to say goodbye before she died. According to Kutner, since not all of her family members were able to make it there in time, “after she spoke with my cousin Stephen, and hung up the phone, we saw that she had passed away. She waited until she parted form the last relative.”