'Pistol' of a woman celebrates 105th birthday - KCTV5 News

'Pistol' of a woman celebrates 105th birthday

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Josephine and her siblings as kids. Josephine and her siblings as kids.
Josephine Passantino still gets out to water her flowers, even at the age of 105. Josephine Passantino still gets out to water her flowers, even at the age of 105.

A woman who has lived through more history than most will ever see made a little of her own on Tuesday.

At 105 years old Josephine Passantino gets around pretty well.

"I come out here and water my flowers sometimes," she says as she gives a tour of her house.

Passantino lives on her own with her cat Mitzy in the same house she's been in for 100 years.

"We had a little house in the back. We lived in that. We tore that one down and moved into this one," she said.

Her parents came to the United States from Sicily and they moved to Kansas City's Little Italy neighborhood when she was 5 years old.

"They used to have big apartment houses over there and they tore them down...and the macaroni factory. I hardly know any of the neighbors anymore," Passantino said, pointing across the street.

Passantino took her first job at the City Market in the 1920s where she met her now-late husband, Vincent, while packing tomatoes.

"They come from out of town and we used to pack them. It was kind of heavy work," she said.

The two never had children, but several nieces and nephews check in on Passantino. They call her Aunt Jo.

"Next to my mother she was close to being my mother. She always took care of me and is a very special woman," said Joe Pecoraro, one of Passantino's nephews.

Even at 105, she can walk on her own, even climb stairs and, on her milestone birthday, Passantino has advice for living a long and happy life.

"All I can say is eat good and keep on going," she said.

Passantino has never smoked, never drank and never driven a car.

To give some perspective about what was going on when she was born, the hit song in 1909 was born was "By the Light of the Silvery Moon," William Howard Taft was president and the day of her birth marks the first race at the Indianapolis Speedway.

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