Virginia McLaurin (centenarian) has died. She danced with President Barack Obama in excitement during a White House visit in 2016. She was 113. Felipe Cardoso Jr. McLaurin said Tuesday that his mom died Monday morning at her Olney home.
On Twitter, the Obamas wrote “Rest in peaceful Virginia.” “We know you’re dancing up there.”
McLaurin was 106 when she visited the White House to attend a Black History Month celebration. McLaurin shouted “Hi!” when she was introduced to President Obama.
Obama asked “Wouldn’t you say hi to Michelle?” McLaurin answered, quickly moving to hug the first lady. “Slow down now!” said the president. “Don’t go too quick.”
They held hands and began to do a spontaneous dance. McLaurin was holding McLaurin’s arm. She stated, “I was afraid I wouldn’t live to be in the White House.” “And you know what? I am so happy!” A Black president. Black wife! It’s Black History Month, and I’m here to celebrate it. That’s exactly what I’m here to do.
International news coverage quickly picked up video of the encounter. McLaurin said to reporters after their brief meeting: “I could just live happy.”
McLaurin’s 2016 visit was arranged by Deborah Menkart, a close friend. She said it changed her life. McLaurin, she said, was living very frugally at the time. But her fame spurred people into donating to her care fund. Menkart explained that McLaurin received a new wig and new teeth so she could move into a better place.
McLaurin later that year was present with a team uniform at a Washington Nationals ball game.
McLaurin also used the fame she gained to help others. McLaurin, who was born March 12, 1909 in South Carolina, had never received a birth certificate. Menkart suggested to them that they contact the Washington Post and also the mayor’s office. Washington city officials issued her a temporary card shortly after the visit and announced new regulations to give older residents more options when it comes to getting IDs.
Menkart said that McLaurin, a sharecropper’s daughter spent decades volunteering in schools after her retirement. According to Obama White House archives, McLaurin was a foster grandmother and mentor to students with special-needs, teaching them social skills and reading.
Cardoso said, “She was so carefree.” “She told me her secret to life was to not worry. So she didn’t let any of it worry her. She just didn’t pay any attention to it.”
Cardoso claimed McLaurin adopted Cardoso when he was three years old. He said, “She loved and took care of everybody.” Cardoso indicated that funeral arrangements were being made.