The world once more has a shortest man, newly crowned by the Guiness World Records and standing at two feet, 3.46 inches tall. Twenty-four-year-old Edward Hernandez from Bogota Columbia is four centimetres shorter than his ancestor, who died filming a television show earlier this year in Rome.
“He hasn’t grown while he was two years old,” said his mother, Noemi Hernandez, of the oldest of her five living children, in a meeting with the Daily Telegraph.
Mr. Hernandez, who weighs just 22 pounds, will be featured in the new Guiness Book of World Records, published Sept. 15. And just in time, too, since in the rough-and-tumble world of short-person politics, Mr. Hernandez will most probable have to relinquish his title in a month, when Khagendra Thapa Magar, the world’s shortest teenager, turns 18 in October. (The Nepalese teen is two inches shorter than Mr. Hernandez.)
“I am very happy to be renowned as the shortest man in the world,” Mr. Hernandez said in a statement. “Every person is special and unique. The more abnormal you are the more you should fight and work harder.”
Mr. Hernandez’s parents told the Telegraph that doctors could not at all explain why he was so small.
Mr. Hernandez takes the crown from He Pingping, the Chinese man who died March 13, 2010 as he was filming a box series in Rome. The former world’s shortest man stood at two-feet, five inches. His family reacted with shock when the 21-year-old from the Chinese region of Inner Mongolia died unexpectedly from heart complications.
At the time, Mr. He’s sister, He Lihua, said her brother hadn’t exposed signs of ill health. “We just did not expect this bad news,” she said from her home in the business city of Baotou in Inner Mongolia where Mr. He also lived. “Pingping went to Italy… and he called us every day saying he wasn’t eating well and that he missed us,” she said.
Mr. He had a form of primeval dwarfism. His father, He Yun, has said that when his son was born he was small enough to fit into his parent’s hands. Mr. He was formally recognized as the world’s smallest man by the Guinness World Records in 2008.