Saturday, 16 December, 2017

World's oldest man and Holocaust survivor dies in Israel aged 114

Yisrael Kristal oldest man 113 Yisrael Kristal in his Haifa home in January 2016
Theodore Harris | 13 August, 2017, 00:51

At his bar mitzvah celebration in September 2016, surrounded by his grandchildren and their families, he reflected on both his personal longevity and the tragedy of the Holocaust, "Here's one person, and look how many people he brought to life".

Israeli media are reporting that the world's oldest man, who lived through both world wars and survived the Holocaust, has died a month short of his 114th birthday.

The previous oldest-recorded man was Japanese Yasutaro Koide, who died in January aged 112 years and 312 days.

The 1916 original celebration had not taken place because of the First World War.

Mr Kristal was born in the village of Zarnow, about 90 miles (146km) south-west of Warsaw, in 1903.

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Kristal was working for his uncle's confectionary business when the Nazis invaded Poland in 1939, marking the beginning of World War II. He had moved with his family in the ghetto of the city. When he was found by Soviet liberating forces, he weighed just 37 kilograms (81 pounds).

Yisrael Kristal, 113, was certified previous year by Guinness World Records as the oldest man alive. "They had to think about a profession and about making a living".

Speaking at the time, he admitted he did not know the secret to a long life, saying: "There have been smarter, stronger and better looking men than me who are no longer alive". Kristal is survived by two children, multiple grandchildren and great grandchildren, according to Guinness.

He and his wife were then sent to Auschwitz where she was murdered.Kristal remarried in 1947 and emigrated to Israel in 1950. Shula Kupershtuch says: "He always saw only light and good in everything".

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