By Hilary Bentman / Phillybuurbs.com

Eleanor Hall turned 105 on May 9th 2013 and just returned from a 10-day venture to Israel with her daughter, and granddaughters. They met with Deputy Consul Elad Strohmayer as well as Consul General Yaron Sideman who presented them with information regarding Israel's past. [Rick Kintzel/Staff Photographer]
Eleanor Hall turned 105 on May 9th 2013 and just returned from a 10-day venture to Israel with her daughter, and granddaughters. They met with Deputy Consul Elad Strohmayer as well as Consul General Yaron Sideman who presented them with information regarding Israel’s past. [Rick Kintzel/Staff Photographer]

Eleanor Hall calls her recent trip to Israel a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Hall just didn’t expect it would happen so late in her life.

“Better late than never,” says the Warwick (PA) resident.

On the cusp of her 105th birthday, Hall spent 10 days in the Holy Land last month on a journey people half her age would find challenging.

But Hall, a feisty former New Yorker, was up for anything, including traversing the tunnels beneath Jerusalem’s Western Wall, getting baptized by the Jordan River and climbing the ancient fortification of Masada (with the assistance of a cable car).

“I wanted to see where Jesus lived and walked. The time came when I knew I was going to do it, no two ways about it,” said Hall, who marked her 105th birthday May 9. “It was wonderful. Achievement accomplished.”

Hall’s pilgrimage to Israel was part of a trip organized by Addisville Reformed Church in Richboro. Fourteen people made the journey, including church pastor Doug Dwyer, Hall’s daughter, Evelyn Sellers, and two of Hall’s grandchildren.

Hall received the royal treatment, beginning with a visit to the Israeli consulate in Philadelphia before the trip. On the plane, the centenarian was serenaded with “Happy Birthday.” And in Israel, people were so enthralled by her longevity that they stopped to take photos with her.

“Mom was a star there. Word got out and people wanted to touch her so the good genes would rub off,” said Sellers, 77.

Over the course of 10 days, the trip took Hall and the others from Tel Aviv north to the Sea of Galilee, then south to the Dead Sea, with stops in Jerusalem and Bethlehem.

For Hall, the highlight was visiting the Garden of Gethsemane where the New Testament says Jesus prayed to God to “Let this cup pass from me.”

“I just wanted to stand in that spot,” said Hall.

At 105, Hall is still going strong. She says there’s no secret to her longevity, though she does put great stock in the power of faith and good health. “Take each day as it comes,” she said. “And take a walk every day.”

So what’s next for Hall? A die-hard Yankees fan, Hall — who has been alive for all 27 of the team’s World Series titles — hopes to visit the new Yankee Stadium, which opened in 2009. Hall and her late husband, Charles, were frequent attendees at the old ballpark, and she remembers a time when they paid just a few quarters for a ticket.

In honor of her birthday, Hall received a very special phone call from Yankees’ manager Joe Girardi wishing her well.


3 thoughts on “105-Year-Old Woman Visits Israel

  • The Lord is good and He is kind. It just goes to show, “Good things come to those who wait”. That this woman could accomplish this trip at 105 years old proves that HaShem is with her. May she have many more healthy years to have new experiences and come closer to the Lord.

  • iwish as a believer she lives to be among those that shall be caught up in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye and meet the Lord in the air. how can such an aged lady be doing her pilgrim and yet young energetic men and women have no idea about all this, and how wise are the moslems who make yearly hajjis to mecca every year? the bible says the children of darkness are more wiser than the children of the light!!!!!! going to Israel isnt a waste of your hard earned cash, you fulfill Gods command, he said 3 times in a year shall all males(females) included.. read the bible and be doers!! iv made it my prayer that i make yearly pilgrim if am a believer to go by!
    see you in Jerusalem next year.

  • by going to Israel, you not only enjoy “walking where he walked”, but you give offerings for your prayers, you buy books, flags, oils, pay hotels etc, and thereby support the nation that nobody wants to see or hear, and are up in arms talking about deleting it from the map of the world!. But just a minute, before you delete it, youl long have been deleted like saddam and kaddaffi were (past tense). all the prophets and prophecies point to this one tiny nation that i pray for every day. When i stepped my feet for the first time, like Jesus, I wept for the joy that filled my heart, and when someone told me as the bus drove through the tunnel, “hey, we are entering Jerusalem!”, i shouted, and felt like Heaven has heard and approved! i wish the children of Israel would stop all their naughtiness and turn to God their creator and acknowledge the messiah, so hasten his second coming!!!!!

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