LAKE CITY, IOWA — Bessie Hendricks, the Lake City woman who became the oldest living person in the United States one year ago, has passed away at the age of 115.

Bessie was born on November 7th, 1907 in Carroll County. She was a teacher at a one-room schoolhouse in Calhoun County before she married and started a family. She raised a family that grew to include five children, nine grandchildren, 28 great-grandchildren and 42 great-great-grandchildren.

At her 110th birthday party in 2017, Bessie told us that the secret to a long life was hard work. She continued crocheting past her 100th birthday. She was also a lifelong Iowa Hawkeye fan and her family says she still followed their teams closely. At that party she also stunned friends and family with a verse from her favorite song – “You Are My Sunshine”. A timeless classic, the song was written when she was 32-years-old.

Memorial arrangements have not been announced. Hendricks was named the oldest person in the US in January 2022. According to multiple online resources, that title now belongs to 114-year-old Edie Ceccarelli of California. She’ll turn 115 on February 5th.