The world’s oldest man, Jiroemon Kimura, has earned a new title as the Last Man Standing to have been born in the 19th Century. Up until last Thursday, the Sydney Morning Herald notes, he was one of two remaining.
But with last week’s death of James Emmanuel “Doc” Sisnett, a 113-year-old living in Barbados, Kimura is the only one still representing from the 1800s. On the other side of the gender coin, there are 21 women still living who were born before New Year’s Day, 1901.
Kimura, however, is older than all of them at age 116. He was born on April 19, 1897. That means he’s not only the oldest man ever, but he’s currently the oldest living human (that can be verified through reliable birth records anyway).
As someone, who has crossed the 110-year-old threshold, the world’s oldest man is now considered a supercentenarian. Along with a Japanese woman, Misao Okawa, he is one of only two known to still be living in 2013.
Kimura was employed for 45 years as a Japanese post office worker. He retired at age 65 in 1962. Today he lives with his eldest son’s 83-year-old widow and his grandson’s 59-year-old widow in Kyō¯tango, Kyoto Prefecture. Kimura attributed his lifespan to consuming only small portions of food and said that he spends most of his days in bed.
During his birthday celebration last year, Kimura also attributed his longevity to “the grace of God.”
“I have nothing but gratitude for the life I’ve been given,” he added. Here’s a bit more on how Kimura keeps himself going strong:
Last year, he was the second oldest human on the planet behind Besse Cooper from Monroe, Georgia, who died in December 2012 at age 116 years and 100 days, according to CNN.
SMH added that Kimura has lived through four emperors and 61 Japanese prime ministers.
If it meant outliving many of your loved ones, as in the case of the world’s oldest man, would you want to live to be age 116?
[Image via Reuters video above]