Oldest Living Man, Dumitru Comanescu, Receives Patriarchal Cross

Basilica News Agency – Aurelian Iftimiu – 29/6/2020

His Beatitude Patriarch Daniel has awarded the Romanian super-centenarian Dumitru Comanescu with the highest distinction of the Romanian Orthodox Church.

Romanian engineer Dumitru Comanescu, a Bucharest resident who is 111 years and 7 months old, has become the oldest living man in the world after British Bob Weighton died on May 28 at the age of 112, according to the WORLD RECORD ACADEMY.

The distinction was given to Dumitru Comănescu “for his long, fruitful and useful activity for the Church and society.”

The Patriarchal Cross and the diploma were handed over Wednesday, June 24, by a team from Lumina Newspaper, led by Father Nicolae Dascălu, patriarchal counsellor and director of the publication, to the man’s great-granddaughter, Sofi Alexandrescu, and her father.

The Romanian super-centenarian sent words of thanks through his relatives for the distinction received.

“My dear ones, here is a Romanian institution that respects old age: the Romanian Orthodox Church! I have the boundless joy of being decorated with the “Patriarchal Cross” by His Beatitude Father Daniel, Patriarch of the Romanian Orthodox Church. It is the highest distinction that a lay Orthodox Christian can receive. And for that, I thank you with gratitude!”

Moreover, Dumitru Comanescu asked his great-granddaughter to record a testimonial in which she thanked the Church on behalf of the whole family.

Comanescu was born on 8 November 1908 in Proviţa de Jos, Drăgăneasa commune, in the county of Prahova.

He graduated from university in 1933 and worked as an agricultural engineer and in plant pathology for an astonishing 70 years, Romanian Insider said.

He used to work as an agricultural engineer and phytopathologist and was a disciple of Gheorghe Ionescu Siseşti, the founder of the Agriculture Research Institute. He initially studied at the Mathematics Faculty and had among his professors the well-known Romanian mathematician Gheorghe Ţiţeica. He later found his calling in working in agriculture. He graduated from university in 1933 and worked for 70 years. In 2003 he performed his last phytopathology assessment. When he was 86 years old, he took part in a competition for agriculture experts, where he finished fifth.

Photography courtesy of Lumina Newspaper