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first dose Ireland's oldest man (107) receives Pfizer Covid-19 vaccine after surviving Spanish Flu pandemic

Michael O'Connor, who survived Spanish flu over 100 years ago, is set to receive his second dose of the covid vaccine on St Patrick's Day.

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Ireland's oldest man Michael O'Connor (107) after receiving the Pfizer vaccine to protect against Covid-19 at Deenagh Medical Practice, Killarney on Wednesday.  Michael survived the Spanish flu over 100 years ago and is set to receive his second dose of the covid vaccine in four weeks time on St. Patrick's Day.  Photo: Eamonn Keogh

Ireland's oldest man Michael O'Connor (107) after receiving the Pfizer vaccine to protect against Covid-19 at Deenagh Medical Practice, Killarney on Wednesday. Michael survived the Spanish flu over 100 years ago and is set to receive his second dose of the covid vaccine in four weeks time on St. Patrick's Day. Photo: Eamonn Keogh

Ireland's oldest man Michael O'Connor (107) after receiving the Pfizer vaccine to protect against Covid-19 at Deenagh Medical Practice, Killarney on Wednesday. Michael survived the Spanish flu over 100 years ago and is set to receive his second dose of the covid vaccine in four weeks time on St. Patrick's Day. Photo: Eamonn Keogh

At the grand old age of 107, Ireland's oldest man Michael O'Connor, has received the Pfizer vaccine to protect against Covid-19.

Michael, who survived Spanish flu over 100 years ago, got the jab from Dr Ken Keohane at Deenagh Medical Practice, Killarney on Wednesday and is set to receive his second dose of the covid vaccine in four weeks’ time on St Patrick's Day.

In October of last year, Michael marked his birthday at his home in Muckross where the champagne was flowing.

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17-02-2021: Ireland's oldest man Michael O'Connor (107) receiving the Pfizer vaccine to protect against Covid-19 from Dr Ken Keohane at Deenagh Medical Practice, Killarney on Wednesday.  Michael survived the Spanish flu over 100 years ago and is set to receive his second dose of the covid vaccine in four weeks time on St. Patrick's Day.  Photo: Eamonn Keogh

17-02-2021: Ireland's oldest man Michael O'Connor (107) receiving the Pfizer vaccine to protect against Covid-19 from Dr Ken Keohane at Deenagh Medical Practice, Killarney on Wednesday. Michael survived the Spanish flu over 100 years ago and is set to receive his second dose of the covid vaccine in four weeks time on St. Patrick's Day. Photo: Eamonn Keogh

17-02-2021: Ireland's oldest man Michael O'Connor (107) receiving the Pfizer vaccine to protect against Covid-19 from Dr Ken Keohane at Deenagh Medical Practice, Killarney on Wednesday. Michael survived the Spanish flu over 100 years ago and is set to receive his second dose of the covid vaccine in four weeks time on St. Patrick's Day. Photo: Eamonn Keogh

He told how he wasn’t expected to live past the age of six after contracting the Spanish Flu. Although he eventually recovered after months in bed, unfortunately his mother Bridie, a teacher in Glencar, succumbed to the illness some months later. His father Daniel, also a teacher in Glencar, died in his 40s.

“107 years ago I kicked myself into this world,” Michael told the Killarney Advertiser.

“I was born in Glencar to Daniel and Bridie, I travelled the world for five years, three in the last war. I then changed to aviation in the early ’40s and stayed in aviation for the rest of my life based in Ballygreen between Shannon and Ennis.”

Michael who came to Killarney 40 years ago in 1980 with his wife Joan, who died in 2008, told how he “built a holiday home up the side of a mountain a few years before I retired. Then, when I retired, I sold the house in Limerick and have been here ever since. There’s no nicer place in the world – and I’ve been around most of it.”

He also attributed his longevity down to a daily glass of whiskey.

“The secret is a glass of Red Breast Whiskey every night before bed,” he revealed.

The number of vaccinations against coronavirus is being scaled up this week with over 80,000 people due to be inoculated.

The vaccination programme for the over-85s began last Monday with the jab being administered in their local GP practice or in 40 vaccination centres around the country.

Those aged over-85 will receive their first dose over a three-week period.

Meanwhile, all over-70s will be administered their first dose by mid-April and their second dose by mid-May.



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