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BIOGRAPHY

Ciocan was born in Galicea, Vâlcea County, Romania, on 10 June 1913 N. S. (28 May 1913 O. S.) as the youngest of several children. During his early childhood, up until the age of seven, he possessed very few clothes. His father died when he was six years old, and his mother followed six years later, leaving Ciocan orphaned at the age of 12.

At a young age, Ciocan worked as a cowherd for “a piece of bread.” He worked at numerous cattle farms until he was 14 years old.

Ciocan was pressured by his older siblings into marrying at the age of 19. His wife was seven years his senior, and owned a plot of land. The couple had six children, three daughters and three sons. At the age of 22, Ciocan was drafted into the army, and endured several training camps before eventually fighting on the front lines in 1941.

In 1994, Ciocan was widowed when his wife died aged 87. He could read without glasses until the age of 103, when his eyesight and hearing began to deteriorate. As a centenarian, he required assistance to perform daily tasks. By his 109th birthday, only two of his daughters and his youngest son were still living.

Ciocan turned 110 in 2023 and became the second male supercentenarian in Romania’s history after Dumitru Comănescu achieved the milestone in 2018. He lives in Bratia din Vale, a small village near his birthplace.

RECOGNITION

Ciocan was first known to researchers at the age of 109, and was widely reported in Romanian media on his 110th birthday in 2023.

It is believed that Ciocan became Romania’s oldest living man following the 15 February 2021 death of Ioan Lascău, 108. Following the death of 109-year-old Maria Mihai on 2 February 2022, Ciocan became the oldest living person in the country.

From 5 April 2023, Ciocan is thought to be the oldest resident of the Balkans, succeeding Greece’s Ioanna Proiou-Dimitriadou, 111.

GALLERY

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