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The oldest man dies in Spain

A Spanish village declared a day of
mourning on Tuesday following the death
of Francisco Nunez Olivera, a retired farmer
billed as “the world’s oldest man”.
Francisco Nunez Olivera: world’s oldest
man dies aged 113
He passed away just over a month after
turning 113.
Olivera, who was 10 years old when World
War I broke out, died on Monday in the
village of Bienvenida in southwestern Spain
where he had lived throughout his life,
village mayor Antonio Carmona told AFP.
“It’s a very cold day and most of all a very
sad day,” Carmona said.
Born on December 13, 1904, relatives
credited Nunez Olivera’s long life to a diet
based on vegetables he grew on his own
land and a daily glass of red wine.
Every morning for breakfast, he would have
sponge cake made with olive oil and a
glass of milk. And until the age of 107, he
went out for daily walks by himself,
according to Spanish media reports
published when he celebrated his last
While the Spanish media described Nunez
Olivera as the world’s oldest man, his name
did not appear on a list kept by the
Gerontology Research Group, which
validates the ages of the world’s longest-
living people.
The US-based group lists Japan’s Masazou
Nonaka, born on July 25, 1905 making him
112, as the world’s oldest man but
Carmona said there were documents to
prove the Spaniard was in fact older. It
also lists a Japanese woman, aged 117, as
the world’s oldest person.
“We were in the process of applying for him
to enter into the Guinness Book of World
Records. It meant a lot to his neighbours
to be represented by the oldest man in the
world,” Carmona said.
Proving Nunez Olivera’s exact age has been
complicated by the fact that most of
Bienvenida’s public archives were destroyed
during Spain’s 1936-39 civil war, according
to newspaper El Mundo.
Nunez Olivera, known in the village as
Marchena due to his likeness to a Spanish
flamenco singer who used that stage name,
had been a widower since 1988.
He fought in the Rif War in the first half of
the 1920s between Spain and the Berber
tribes of the Rif mountains in Morocco and
survived General Francisco Franco’s
1936-75 dictatorship.
He was one of 32 people over the age of 90
among the roughly 2 200 inhabitants of the
village, according to El Mundo. Spain has
one of the highest life expectancies in the
world, which doctors often attribute to the
country’s Mediterranean diet. — AFP.

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