Now, world’s oldest people are Japanese

By Associated Press

Alexander Imich

NEW YORK (AP) –The world’s oldest man, a retired chemist and parapsychologist, has died in New York City. Alexander Imich was 111.

His niece says Imich died on June 8 at his home in Manhattan, after his health deteriorated in the past two weeks.

Imich was born in 1903 in a town in Poland that was then part of Russia. He and his wife fled after the Nazis invaded in 1939. They eventually moved to the United States in 1951. His wife died in 1986.

In news reports, Imich said his good genes and a general healthy lifestyle contributed to his longevity.

Guinness is investigating the claim that 111-year-old Sakari Momoi of Japan is now the world’s oldest man.

Momoi, 111, was born on Feb. 5, 1903, just one day after Imich.

In September 2013, in an interview on Respect for the Aged Day, Momoi told reporters, “I want to live for two more years.”

The world’s oldest person is a Japanese woman, 116-year-old Misao Okawa.

According to Wikipedia, Okawa, 116, was born on March 5, 1898, the fourth daughter of a draper in the Tenma district (present-day Kita-ku) of Osaka, and now lives at a nursing home in Higashisumiyoshi-ku, Osaka .

She married Yukio Okawa in 1919 and had three children, two of whom are still alive. Her husband died in1931. She has four grandchildren and six great-grandchildren. When she was 102, she was found doing leg squats “to keep her body in shape.” She was able to walk until she was 110, when she began using a wheelchair, which she propels herself. She has been the world’s oldest living woman since the death of 115-year-old Japanese woman Koto Okubo on Jan. 12, 2013.

On Feb. 27, 2013, a few days before her 115th birthday, Misao Okawa was officially recognized by Guinness World Records as the oldest living woman in the world, and was presented with a certificate at her nursing home in Osaka.

Okawa is the second oldest verified Japanese person ever (behind Tane Ikai) and the ninth oldest verified person ever. She is also the 30th verified person to reach the age of 115 and the 10th verified person to reach the age of 116. (end)

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