Mrs. Kama Chinen was born in Okinawa, Japan on 10 May 1895. It should be noted that she shared her birthday with Kohachi Shigetaka, another Japanese man. Also born on 10 May 1895, he died on 3 July 2005 at age 110 years, 54 days. Chinen's family guarded her privacy very, very closely, making it extremely difficult to obtain interviews or other information about her.
She became the oldest person in Japan on 5 April 2008 upon the death of Kaku Yamanaka, who had held the same title for just 43 days.
Despite having become the oldest living Japanese, Chinen was not validated by the GRG until 20 September 2008. By that time, she was already the sixth-oldest person in the world and had developed a somewhat notorious reputation as the "missing top-ten candidate" -- her existence was already confirmed, even though no one knew even her name until September 2008.
Chinen became the second-oldest person in the world on 19 January 2009, then aged 113 years and 254 days. The succession followed the death of Beatrice Farve, who, until that time, had been the second-oldest person in the world at the time of her death at age 113 years, 264 days.
Chinen in 2005, when she just turned 110.Chinen became the oldest person in the world at age 114 years, 124 days when Gertrude Baines died of a suspected heart attack on 11 September 2009 at the age of 115 years, 158 days. She was then the 52nd oldest person to have ever lived.
When American Neva Morris died on 6 April 2010, Chinen became the last verified person ever to have been born in 1895. Before this, she had been confirmed alive only on 25 January 2010.
Chinen, apparently 114 years, 125 days old, on 12 September 2009.On 2 May 2010, less than one month later, Chinen was rushed to hospital in Nanjo, Okinawa. Her condition rapidly deteriorated, and she died at 4.40pm local time in Japan. She was 114 years, 357 days old, and had fallen just 8 days short of her 115th birthday. Her death left 114-year, 75-day-old Eugenie Blanchard of France as the new oldest living person.
Chinen left behind a respectable legacy after her death.
She died as the second-oldest Japanese ever on record, behind only 116-year-old Tane Ikai. (116-year-old Kamato Hongo and 120-year-old Shigechiyo Izumi, who are both disputed, are not counted.)
Chinen also died as the 28th oldest person ever, a record that will definitely not be broken within this year, especially since Eugenie Blanchard was at 66th place and will surpass her age only on 9 February 2011.
Chinen's death also ended her reign of 2 years, 27 days as the oldest Japanese and passing the title to 113-year-old Chiyono Hasegawa, who was born on 20 November 1896.