Kimura on his 115th birthday on April 19, 2012
|Native name||木村 次郎右衛門|
|Born||三宅 金治郎 (Miyake Kinjirō?)
April 19, 1897
|Died||June 12, 2013
(aged 116 years, 54 days)
|Cause of death||Natural causes|
|Residence||Kyōtango, Kyoto Prefecture, Japan|
|Occupation||Retired postal worker, farmer|
|Spouse(s)||Yae Kimura (1904–1978) (m. ?–1978; her death)|
|Parent(s)||Morizo and Fusa Miyake|
Jiroemon Kimura (木村 次郎右衛門 Kimura Jirōemon?, April 19, 1897 – June 12, 2013) was a Japanese supercentenarian. He became the undisputed oldest male in history on December 28, 2012, at the age of 115 years and 253 days when he surpassed the age of Christian Mortensen who died in 1998; and also became the first man who undisputably reached 116 years of age, being 116 years and 54 days old at the time of his death from natural causes on June 12, 2013, in a hospital in his hometown of Kyōtango, Kyoto Prefecture, Japan. He was also the last known living man born in the 19th century.
Kimura became the oldest living man in Japan upon the death of Tomoji Tanabe on June 19, 2009, the world's oldest living man upon the death of Walter Breuning on April 14, 2011, the oldest living person in Japan upon the death of Chiyono Hasegawa on December 2, 2011, and the world's oldest living person upon the death of Dina Manfredini on December 17, 2012, until his own death.
Early life and education
Kimura was born as Kinjiro Miyake (三宅 金治郎 Miyake Kinjirō?) on April 19, 1897 in the fishing village of Kamiukawa, the third of six children born to farmers Morizo and Fusa Miyake. According to Kimura's nephew, Tamotsu Miyake, Kimura was actually born on March 19, 1897 but his birthday was instead recorded as April 19, 1897 by mistake in 1955 when records from neighboring towns were consolidated and re-done. He finished school second in his class at age 14 and commenced working from local post offices around the age of 17.
Marriage and career
In the 1920s, Kimura also worked as a government communications worker in Korea under Japanese rule. Upon returning from Korea, he married his neighbor, Yae Kimura (1904–1978). Since his wife's family lacked a male heir, he changed his name to Jiroemon Kimura, becoming the ninth member of the family to bear that name. He retired in 1962 at the age of 65, having worked in post offices for 45 years. After retiring he turned to farming until the age of 90.
Four of Kimura's siblings lived past the age of 90, and his youngest brother died at the age of 100. Kimura had seven children, five of whom survived him, 14 grandchildren (13 surviving), 25 great-grandchildren and 15 great-great-grandchildren. Kimura was health conscious and active. He woke up early in the morning and read newspapers with a magnifying glass. Also, he enjoyed talking to guests and followed live parliamentary debates on television. According to him, small portions of food (hara hachi bu) were the key to a long and healthy life. Kimura resided in Kyōtango, Kyoto Prefecture, with his eldest son's widow, 83, and his grandson's widow, 59.
On his 114th birthday on April 19, 2011, Kimura mentioned his survival of the 7.6 magnitude 1927 Kita Tango earthquake that hit Kyoto and killed over 3,000 people. Being born in the year 30 of the Meiji period, he lived in the reigns of 4 emperors, and during the premierships of 61 Japanese Prime Ministers, from Matsukata Masayoshi to Shinzō Abe.
In October 2012, Kimura was presented with a certificate from Guinness World Records Editor-in-Chief Craig Glenday, relating to Kimura's appearance in the 2013 edition of Guinness World Records book; this was the second year in a row Kimura was recognized as the oldest living man in the world, as he also appeared in the book the year before. During the meeting, Kimura said he spent most of his time in bed.
On his 116th and final birthday, Kimura received many well-wishes, including a video message from Japan's Prime Minister Shinzō Abe. He was hospitalized for pneumonia on May 11, 2013. On May 23, 2013, James Sisnett of Barbados died, Kimura became the last verified living man born in 19th century. He died of natural causes in the hospital in his hometown of Kyōtango, western Japan, at 2:08 a.m. on June 12, 2013. His funeral was held on June 14.
- List of supercentenarians who died in 2013
- List of oldest people by nation
- List of the verified oldest people
- List of Japanese supercentenarians
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- Zoominuk. "World's oldest man ever turns 116". YouTube.
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- "Jiroemon Kimura, Oldest Man in Recorded History, Dies at 116". June 12, 2013. Retrieved June 14, 2013.
- "Japan's oldest man says 'thank you very much'". Japan Times. June 22, 2009. Archived from the original on July 26, 2010. Retrieved October 3, 2009.
- Volz, Matt (April 14, 2011). "Walter Breuning, World's Oldest Man, Dies In Montana At 114". Huffington Post. Retrieved December 17, 2012.
- Breaking News Online Team (April 19, 2011). "Jiroemon Kimura becomes World's Oldest Man at 114". Breaking News Online.
- "Oldest Validated Living Supercentenarians". Gerontology Research Group. Retrieved December 12, 2012.
- "115-year-old Iowa Woman Dies, Was World's Oldest Person". KCRG-TV9. December 17, 2012. Retrieved December 17, 2012.
- 「はいはい、ありがとう」長寿世界一の木村さんが１１６回目の誕生日 [World's oldest person, Kimura, celebrates 116th birthday]. MSN Sankei News (in Japanese). Japan: The Sankei Shimbun & Sankei Digital. April 19, 2013. Retrieved April 19, 2013.
- 長寿世界一 １１６歳の木村次郎右衛門氏死去 [World's oldest person, Jiroemon Kimura, dies at 116]. Sponichi Annex (in Japanese). Japan: Sports Nippon Newspapers. June 12, 2013. Retrieved October 20, 2013.
... died of old age at a hospital in Kyotango, Kyoto (老衰のため京都府京丹後市の病院で死去した?)
- Yamaguchi, Mari (September 10, 2009). "Japan's century club swells to more than 40,000". ABC News. Archived from the original on July 26, 2010. Retrieved October 3, 2009.
- Kemsley, Tamarra (May 28, 2013). "Last Man Alive to Have Been Born in 1800s Celebrates 116th Birthday". Nature World News. Retrieved 4 January 2015.
- "Der älteste Mann der Welt". Asienspiegel (in German). April 20, 2011.
- "Worlds oldest living man welcomes Guinness World Records editor to his home". Guinness World Records. October 15, 2012.
- "New record for world's oldest man Jiroemon Kimura". BBC News. October 16, 2012.
- Damien Fletcher (June 12, 2013). "World's oldest person and oldest man ever to live Jiroemon Kimura dies aged 116". Daily Mirror. Retrieved January 4, 2014.
- いつまでも「輝く宝」で 木村次郎右衛門さん告別式 [Jiroemon Kimura's funeral - a sparkling jewel forever]. Kyoto Shimbun (in Japanese). Japan: The Kyoto Shimbun Co., Ltd. June 14, 2013. Retrieved October 20, 2013.
|Oldest living Japanese man
June 19, 2009 – June 12, 2013
|Oldest living man
April 14, 2011 – June 12, 2013
|Oldest Japanese man ever
October 26, 2011 – present
|Oldest living Japanese person
December 2, 2011 – June 12, 2013
|Oldest living person
December 17, 2012 – June 12, 2013
|Oldest undisputed man ever
December 28, 2012 – present