The unofficial ‘world’s oldest man’ has celebrated his 116th birthday.
South African Fredie Blom celebrated his 116th birthday on Friday unfazed by the coronavirus crisis, over 100 years since the Spanish flu pandemic killed his sister. Centenarian Fredie Blom was born on May 8, 1904, in Adelaide near the Great Winterberg mountain range of South Africa’s Eastern Cape province.
“I have lived this long because of God’s grace,” said Blom, possibly one of the oldest men in the world.
Lighting a cigarette, he recalled the 1918 pandemic that left tens of millions dead worldwide including his sister.
Blom was born in 1904 in the rural town of Adelaide, tucked near the Great Winterberg mountain range of South Africa’s Eastern Cape province.
According to the Daily, Blom is older than a 112-year old British resident named the world’s oldest living man by the Guinness World Records in March. Blom’s age has not yet been verified by the body.
Blom has spent most of his life working on farms around Cape Town. He met his 86-year old wife Jeanette at a dance and won her heart over with his jive moves.
The couple have been married for almost fifty years.
At his great age, however, he says he won’t let the coronavirus pandemic panic him-AFP reported
Blom stopped visiting doctors more than two years ago, claiming he was tired of being pricked and prodded.
“Now he just takes two Disprins a day, but sometimes he steals my pills,” Jeanette said, laughing affectionately at her stubborn husband.
Dispirin pills contain aspirin and relieve mild to moderate pain.
Speaking to News24 in 2019, Mr Blom said that there is no secret to his longevity.
‘It’s the boss upstairs who decided that my time isn’t up yet. I smoke my tobacco. I don’t go to the doctor. All I drink is an Eno and a Disprin tablet every day. And I am fine,’ he said.
While Blom never had children, he adopted Jeanette’s two from a previous marriage as his own.
“He has done everything for us,” said Blom’s step-daughter Jasmien Toerien, 38.