The world’s oldest man has passed away. Alexander Imich, a 111-year-old Polish psychic researcher, died Sunday morning at a senior residence in New York City.
He received the title after the previous record-holder-Italy’s Arturo Licata-died almost two months ago on April 24 at 111 years and 357 days. According to his longtime friend Michael Mannion, Imich chose to offer his body to Mount Sinai Medical Center for study.
In an interview with The New York Times, the deceased made light of his old age, saying, “Not like it’s the Nobel Prize. I never thought I’d be that old.”
Imich was born on Feb. 4, 1903, and fled Poland with his wife when the Nazis invaded. He survived a slave labor camp in Russia and moved to the United States in 1951.
Imich credits his long life to the fact that he never had children and he exercised regularly, ate moderately and never drank alcohol. “I was a gymnast,” he said. “Good runner, a good springer. Good javelin, and I was a good swimmer.”
The former researcher also shared his positive outlook on death: “The compensation for dying is that I will learn all the things I was not able to learn here on Earth.”
But the late doctor was actually the world’s 66th oldest person. There are 65 women older than Imich, according to the Gerontology Research Group, which keeps track of supercentenarians – people over the age of 110.
As of last weekend, there were 76 supercentenarians worldwide, including Imich, who had been declared the world’s oldest man in May. Of those 76, only three were men. The remaining 73 supercentenarians were all women.
The world’s oldest woman, Japanese Misao Okawa, is 116. She was born in 1898.
The average life expectancy for American women is 81.92 years, according to 2014 government estimates. Men, on the other hand, live an average 77.11 years.