Besse Cooper, who was listed as the world's oldest person, died Tuesday at a Georgia nursing home at age 116.
She died peacefully Tuesday afternoon in Monroe, according to her son Sidney Cooper. Monroe is about 45 miles east of Atlanta.
Cooper said his mother had been ill recently with a stomach virus, then felt better Monday. On Tuesday he said she had her hair set and watched a Christmas video, but later had trouble breathing. She was put on oxygen in her room and died there about 2 p.m., Cooper said.
"With her hair fixed, it looked like she was ready to go," he said.
Besse Cooper was declared the world's oldest person in January 2011. In May 2011, Guinness World Records learned that Maria Gomes Valentim of Brazil was 48 days older. Valentim died the next month.
Besse Cooper was born in Tennessee and moved to Georgia during World War I to look for work as a teacher.