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South African oldest man dies at 116

South Africa’s Oldest Man Who Survived 1918 Spanish Flu, Dies At 116

A 116-year-old survivor of the 1918 Spanish Flu believed to be the oldest man in South Africa died on Saturday, according to his family said.

Born on 8th May 1904, Fredie Blom had “lived this long because of God’s grace,” he told Agence France-Presse (AFP) this year.

Guinness World Records lists the oldest living man now as Briton Bob Weighton, aged 112, but South African media have described Blom as “unofficially” the world’s oldest.

Blom’s entire family was wiped out by the Spanish Flu pandemic when he was just a teenager.

But he himself survived and went on to raise the three children of his wife of 46 years, Jeanette, as his own, becoming a grandfather to five over the years.

“Two weeks ago oupa (grandfather) was still chopping wood,” family spokesman Andre Naidoo told AFP fondly, recalling the old man using a 4-pound hammer.

“He was a strong man, full of pride,” he added.

But within 3 days, his family saw him shrink “from a big man to a small person.”

Born in the rural town of Adelaide, tucked near the Great Winterberg mountain range of South Africa’s Eastern Cape province, this SA’s oldest man died at Tygerberg Hospital in Cape Town.

His death was “not related to COVID-19 complications at all, it’s normal natural death,” Naidoo said in reference to the coronavirus pandemic.

Source: Daily Sabah

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