Every day, the family gets together on a video call and they always look out for one another.
These 12 siblings may be spread across the globe, but the miles between them cannot break the strong bond they share with each other.
The D’Cruz family siblings, aged between 75 to 97, have now broken the Guinness World Record and earned themselves the title of the highest combined age. With the record confirmed on December 15, the 12 siblings share a combined age of 1,042 years and 315 days, as reported by CNN.
The oldest of the siblings, Doreen was born in the year 1923 while the youngest, Eugenia was born more than two decades later in the year 1945.
“I’m 75 and the eldest is 97,” Londoner Genia Carter, the youngest sibling said. “In 22 years, one woman gave birth to 12 children."https://t.co/WyIHz0nbRF— Globalnews.ca (@globalnews) December 31, 2020
Doreen (born on September 3, 1923), is followed by Patrick (September 30, 1925), Genevieve (July 4, 1927), Joyce (March 2, 1929), Ronnie (August 24, 1930), Beryl (August 26, 1932), Joe (June 1, 1934), Francesca (September 17, 1936), Althea (July 27, 1938), Teresa (June 9, 1940), Rosemarie (March 30, 1943), and finally, Eugenia (October 24, 1945).
Although they no longer live together in the same country, they are still very much involved in each other's lives and they now have a world record to celebrate together.
"It feels really wonderful," 91-year-old Joyce told CTVNews.ca. "We’re very proud of the fact that we’re still alive. That’s the greatest part."
Born in Karachi, Pakistan, the siblings went on to settle in the USA, Canada, and Switzerland. And they have always tried to reunite and spend the major holidays together. However, following the outbreak of the coronavirus, the family reunions in-person have taken a hit.
Nevertheless, the D’Cruz has learned to make do with what they have and are sharing that much-needed family time on video calls. They have a fixed time every day where the 12 siblings log on to Zoom and share some time together.
75-year-old Genia, the youngest of the siblings who is also called "the baby" of the bunch, joked that the family might even be considered for another world record for the number of Zoom meetings they have scheduled.
"Since we started doing Zoom, we’ve got so much closer," 80-year-old Teresa told CTV London.
93-year-old Joyce also shared, "Ever since we got close, the ties are so tight they can never be broken."
Talking about their childhood, Genia said, "We were all born in Pakistan and my father (Michael) died when I was a-year-and-a-half, and our main aim in life was to survive and that's what we did."
Their mother, Cecilia, passed away at the age of 66 after giving birth to 12 children and giving them memories that they still remember today.
"What I remember most about her is that she really looked after us," said 84-year-old Francesca while 86-year-old Joe added, "I was very good in sports because when my mom was angry at me she would throw a slipper but I would duck."
With 12 siblings in the family, there is always something to talk about and their daily Zoom calls are now something they excitedly look forward to. Genia added, "We always looked after one another I think that is the secret, we didn’t have a lot but we loved and cared for one another."
As she gave her advice on living a long and happy life, Genia told Global News, "always try to forgive and forget, and look to your siblings for support."