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103-year-old man who survived 1918 pandemic and Holocaust receives COVID-19 vaccine

Published: Mar. 8, 2021 at 10:03 AM EST
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SANTA CLARA COUNTY, Calif. (KGO) – A 103-year-old man who survived the Spanish flu has received his second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.

Emil Hopner not only lived through the Spanish flu pandemic of 1918 – he survived the Holocaust and fled from Hitler.

Born in Croatia, he lost 30 relatives, including his parents, in the Holocaust.

Hopner was able to escape to Switzerland and then later came to the U.S., where he worked for IBM for many years.

At the mass vaccination site at Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara on Wednesday, Hopner got his second vaccine shot.

He said seeking preventative medical care is a big reason for his long and healthy life, but he also credited his wife.

“I thank God every day,” he said. “At 103, I feel still in good shape, because my wife takes care of me all the way. She’s wonderful. A piece of gold.”

Hopner said now that he’s fully vaccinated, he’s hoping to be able to go out for Sunday lunch again soon.

Copyright 2021 KGO via CNN Newsource. All rights reserved.