Morrie Markoff, oldest man in the United States, dies at 110

Morrie Markoff, a supercentenarian blogger and scrap metal sculptor who was considered the oldest man in the United States and whose brain was donated for research into so-called superaging, died June 3 in his home in downtown Los Angeles. Angeles. He was 110 years old.

He had two strokes in recent weeks, his daughter, Judith Markoff Hansen, said, confirming his death.

People who live to be 110 years or older are considered supercentenarians, and the Gerontology Research Group, in Los Angeles, lists more than 150 of them around the world.

Mr. Markoff, born in New York on January 11, 1914, six months before the start of World War I, joined the club this year and was considered the oldest living man in the United States after his death in January of François Zouéinat 113, in California.

From April, the oldest living man in the world is supposed to be John Alfred Tinniswood, from England, at 111 years old, according to Guinness World Records. (Guinness Lists Maria Branyas Moreraoriginally from California and living in Spain, she is the oldest woman in the world, at 117 years old.)

When Mr. Markoff heard the news that he had moved to the top of the list, “He just smiled and said, ‘Well, someone must be there,'” his daughter said in an interview.

He was distinguished not only by his longevity but also by his lucidity unusual for his age. Until his final months, he scanned the Los Angeles Times every morning, discussing the war in Ukraine and other world events, and posting dispatches about his life on his blog. Blog.

“He believed that if he stayed active he would live, and he really wanted to live,” Ms. Hansen said.

Mr. Markoff has passed the mark of what researchers call super-aging — a person over 80 whose brain looks decades younger. And that made his brain very valuable for research, said Tish Hevel, executive director of the Brain donation projecta nonprofit organization based in Naples, Florida, affiliated with the National Institutes of Health.

“There is a critical need for this tissue for neuroscience research,” Ms. Hevel said. “One in five of us now suffers from a neurological disease or disorder, many of which develop late in life. Scientists have much to learn from Mr. Markoff’s tissue about how to stay healthy into old age. It’s an incredible gift he gives us.

Morris Markoff was born in an East Harlem tenement, one of four children of Max and Rose Markoff, Jewish immigrants from Russia. His father was a cabinetmaker. His mother “was a peddler selling kitchen wares,” Mr. Markoff once said in a interview posted on his blog.

Her childhood family of six shared a 400-square-foot apartment with no closets, hot water or toilet (they used one in the hallway) and was infested with vermin and bedbugs. “Burning bed frames was an annual ritual among tenement dwellers,” he wrote in a 2017 autobiography, “Keep Breathing: Recollections From a 103-Year-Old.”

He overcame infection during the 1918 Spanish flu pandemic, which claimed the life of a brother….

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