World's oldest man dies in New York

NEW YORK (AFP) - The world's oldest man, a 111-year old Polish immigrant to the US, has died at a New York home for the elderly, media reported on Monday.

Alexander Imich passed away early Sunday at a Manhattan senior residence where he had lived since 1986, the New York Times reported. He turned 111 on February 4.

Mr Imich, a retired chemist and parapsychologist, was certified in April as the world's oldest man by the Gerontology Research Group of Torrance, California.

At the time, 66 women were officially older than Imich, the oldest being 116, the Times reported.

News reports said the title of world's oldest man will now go to Sakari Momoi of Japan, also 111, born just one day after Imich in 1903.

Interviewed by US television about the secret of his long life, Imich once quipped: "I don't know, I simply didn't die earlier. I have no idea how this happened." But in other interviews, he attributed his longevity to the fact that he and his wife, Wela, a painter and therapist who died in 1986, never had children.

He reportedly also exercised regularly, ate sparingly and never drank alcohol.

The Times said Imich in his will has left his body to medical research.

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