May 21, 2015
A 110-Year-Old Nebraska Man Credits Beer -- And Lots Of Heart -- With His Long Life

If 110-year-old Mark Behrends wasn't constantly reminded of his age, he wouldn't really notice it. But the Nebraska man is supercentenarian -- an unusual milestone for a man -- and his secret to longevity is something rather manly -- a can of beer a day.

He prefers Miller brands, in case you were wondering.

"He always told everybody the reason he has lived so long is drinking one can of beer, every day at 3 p.m., (joking) that that was his medicine since he takes very little medicine," his daughter, Lois Bassinger, told the Omaha World Herald.

He reached that remarkable achievement on May 16. The oldest verified man in the entire country, his two closest contenders are a 116-year-old in California and a 112-year-old in Illinois, but they have incomplete age records.

Mark doesn't beat the ladies, however, since women usually stick around a bit longer than the guys. The top 50 oldest people in the U.S. are actually female. He is one of only three men in the state, and 31 women, to make it this far.

The supercentenarian was born in 1905 and grew up on a farm, married a woman named Irene -- who died in 1983 -- and raised four sons and three daughters. One of them, Mary Lou Woods, remembered his work ethic.

"He was out in the field morning to night. When it was time to start chores, he would holler up at us to wake up. Then he would go out to start milking the cows, and we would all go back to sleep. When we heard him coming up the steps, we knew we had to get out of bed and get moving quick."
He was independent until 106 and still has his driver's license. Longevity seems to run his genes, and could be credited for his extensive life: Another relative lived to be 99. His children didn't expect their father to last to 110, his daughter said.
"When he turned 99, we had a big party for him because we didn't know if he'd make it to 100... He made it, so we had a bigger party (at 100)... We keep having parties and thinking, 'This could be the last one.' "
Besides the beer, Behrends credits living to 110 with one other thing: Heart.

[Photo Courtesy Twitter]