Home News 107-year-old ‘ouma’ survives Covid-19

107-year-old ‘ouma’ survives Covid-19

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Meta Reed on her 106th birthday a year ago at Belgrave Lodge. Picture: Soraya Crowie

A VERY special Kimberley lady, “Ouma” Meta Reed, has survived Covid-19 – at the ripe old age of 107 years.

Reed was admitted to Mediclinic Gariep 10 days ago with very mild symptoms after testing positive for Covid-19.

The virus has affected 10 of the elderly residents at Belgrave Lodge, where Reed is a resident.

The matron of Belgrave Lodge, Tessa van Wyk, said on Thursday that Reed was taken to hospital as a precaution because of her advanced age after her results came back positive.

“It has now been more than 10 days and she is doing very well,” Van Wyk said yesterday. “According to the hospital, she has recovered from the Covid-19 virus, although they are keeping her in hospital as she has a mild infection.”

Mediclinic Gariep spokesperson Denise Coetzee confirmed that Reed was admitted to the hospital. “She is still in hospital and is receiving oxygen, but she is doing very well,” Coetzee said yesterday.

According to Van Wyk, two of the 10 Belgrave Lodge residents who tested positive are currently in the hospital, including Reed. The others are in isolation at the old age home where, Van Wyk said, they were doing very well.

“The first resident tested positive on August 2, and the 10th person to test positive got his results yesterday (Wednesday). However, most of them fortunately only have mild symptoms.”

Born on March 13, 1913, Ouma Reed celebrated her 107th birthday five months ago.

The centenarian was born in Kimberley in 19 Compton Street, De Beers, the eldest of 10 children.

Interviewed a year ago on her 106th birthday at Belgrave Lodge, Reed said it had always been her life-long ambition to be a music teacher or school teacher. “But as the eldest of 10 children that was not to be,” she said and instead as a 16-year-old, she started working at the Parkview Hotel in Kimberley.

Reed and her husband, Alan Michael, who was also Kimberley-born, lived for many years at 8 Halkett Road before they were “put out of our home” under the apartheid Group Areas Act.

The couple, who have two children, spent 16 years in the Cape, before coming back to Kimberley.

“My husband passed away 15 years ago. He was my first and only but I did have lots of boyfriends when I was young,” Reed said at the time, with a twinkle in her eye.

Asked about her reflections on her long and healthy life, Reed had the following to say: “I have been through so many hard and difficult times. Sometimes I sit here and wonder why the Lord has kept me for so long. There must be a reason. When I hear people speaking about things, I realise that life for me has been totally different. I think it was something special.”