Jirouemon Kimura, Japan's oldest person and the world's oldest man, celebrated his 115th birthday at home today.
Kimura lives in Kyotango City in western Japan and spends most of his time in bed these days, although he does manage to eat all three meals a day with his family and reads the newspaper daily, reported the Associated Press.
Just 237 days shy of being the oldest living person, Kimura gave reporters and photographers in his home a surprise when he gave them a message — in English.
"Thank you very much. You are very kind man," Kimura said, according to KABC News Radio.
Born on April 19, 1897, Kimura worked at a local post office for 38 years, reported the AP. He changed careers after his retirement at 65 and became a farmer, not stopping until the age of 90.
Kimura has seven children (five who are still alive), 14 grandchildren, 25 great-grandchildren and 13 great-great-grandchildren.
"It is all thanks to the grace of God," Kimura said to KABC. "I have nothing but gratitude for the life I've been given."
Kimura is just one of five Japanese who are on the list of 10 oldest people in the world, according to the Guinness Book of World Records.
The AP reported that the previous oldest living man was American Walter Breuning, who was born on September 21, 1896 and died on April 14, 2011.
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