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Health Minister Terrance Deyalsingh celebrates with centenarian Francilla Nurse at her home yesterday.

Surviving a pandemic is indeed an accomplishment but doing so while turning 100 years old is definitely something to celebrate.

Tomorrow (Friday), Francilla Nurse will mark 100 years of what she says is a “wonderful” life.

She got a head start on her birthday celebration yesterday with a visit by Health Minister and MP for St Joseph Terrence Deyalsingh.

“I am happy because I am here,” she told the media during a brief interview at her home.

For her entire life Francilla stated she has had the guidance of someone special.

“I serve my God first and he has kept me here for a purpose. Every day, as I open my eyes in the morning I make the sign of the cross and I put myself in his hands. I ask him to walk with me and talk to me,” she added.

Francilla was her parents’ only child but insisted she was far from “spoilt.”

“She (mother) believes in discipline and I got a few lashes when it was necessary,” according to her.

Today, Francilla sits as a proud mother of five– three girls and two boys but, according to her there was no pressure thanks to one particular trick.

She said, “They say you are to not beat children today but you must do that sometimes and since they have taken away the strap completely from the parents and the teachers, you see the type of discipline we have today.”

Francilla’s son, Dr Louis Nurse, insisted he was not the troublemaker in the set.

He added, “I think one of the most important things is that mummy always stood behind me. She is a supporter and I think what boys need is for their mothers to support them.”

Francilla said she would like to live as long as the lord lets her!