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Man Who Claimed To Be 146 Years Old Dies In Indonesia

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

On the Indonesian island of Java, a small farming village buried a local legend this week. The man's name was Sodimedjo. He also went by Mbah Ghoto. And he claimed he was born in 1870...

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

What?

MARTIN: ...Which would have made him 146 years old.

INSKEEP: Wow. If true, it would be the longest recorded lifespan ever, a life filled with fishing and farming and reportedly a pack of cigarettes per day. He spoke with the BBC last year.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

SODIMEDJO: (Through interpreter) I always try to be patient and accept and believe that there will always be someone looking after me. I've had a long life because I have people that love me looking after me.

INSKEEP: Although he couldn't prove just how long, he had a government-issued ID that listed his birthday as New Year's Eve, 1870. But Indonesia did not start recording births until 1900, so he does not have an official birth certificate.

MARTIN: The oldest verified person is a French woman who lived to be 122. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.