World's Oldest Man Is 112-Year-Old American

Salustiano Sanchez-Blazquez lives in upstate New York
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jul 25, 2013 2:08 PM CDT
World's Oldest Man Is 112-Year-Old American
This photo provided by Guinness World Records shows 112 year-old Salustiano Sanchez-Blazquez of western New York.   ((AP Photo/Guiness World Records))

A 112-year-old self-taught musician, coal miner, and gin rummy aficionado from western New York is the world's oldest man, according to Guinness World Records. Salustiano Sanchez-Blazquez claimed the title when Jiroemon Kimura died last month at age 116. (The world's oldest person is a woman, 115-year-old Misao Okawa of Japan.) Born June 8, 1901, in village of El Tejado de Bejar, Spain, Salustiano was known for his talent on the dulzania, a double-reed wind instrument that he taught himself and played at village celebrations. At 17, he moved with his older brother and a group of friends to Cuba, where they worked in the cane fields. In 1920, he came to the United States and worked in the coal mines of Kentucky.

Ultimately, he moved to the Niagara Falls area of New York, working in construction and in the industrial furnaces. He married his wife, Pearl, in 1934. "He says, `I'm an old man and let's leave it at that,'" says his daughter, 69-year-old Irene Johnson. Salustiano lived with Johnson in Grand Island after his wife died in 1988; he moved to a nearby nursing home in 2007. Besides his daughter, he has a 76-year-old son, seven grandchildren, 15 great-grandchildren, and five great-great-grandchildren. (More oldest man stories.)

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