Australia’s oldest person has died aged 111. Former grazier and veterinary surgeon, Dexter Kruger, passed away peacefully in his sleep at an aged care home in Roma, Queensland after a brief illness.
Dexter officially became Australia’s oldest man on May 17, when he was aged 111 years and 124 days, overtaking World War I veteran Jack Lockett who died in 2002 aged 111 years and 123 days.
Born on January 13, 1910 to German immigrant parents, he spent most of his life on his 5,300-hectare cattle property, only leaving his primary place of residence in his mid-90s.
During his lifetime, he lived through two world wars, countless droughts and 30 prime ministers.
He was also a poet and author, writing 12 books, the most recent of which was an autobiography.
He dabbled in social media, but had a problem signing up for Twitter when the system could not accept an applicant born in 1920.
Dexter said living a remote rural lifestyle and eating chicken brains helped him reach such an impressive age.
“People do eat too much,” he said. “They eat themselves into the grave.”
“Find something you like to do and do it well,” was his advice. “I set myself a goal when I was quite young and I achieved that.”
Dexter said becoming Australia’s oldest person was “a great honour”.
Ann Leahy MP, the member for Warrego in Queensland, sent her “deepest sympathy to the family and friends of Australian legend, Dexter Kruger.
“We will all miss his signature charm, dry wit and love of chocolate.
“Dexter has left us with a wonderful legacy, of 12 books, over 300 stories and poems and an autobiography,” Leahy continued.
“My kindest thoughts are with his family during this difficult time.”