James Bedford Becomes the Longest Surviving Human

James Bedford was the first person to be cryopreserved following death, and unlike the others from that early era of cryonics he remains preserved today, nearly fifty years later, at the Alcor facility. It is an open question as to the degree to which the crude preservation methodologies of the time damaged the fine structure of his brain due to ice crystal formation, making restoration a far more complex project, requiring far more advanced future technologies. Even taking that into account restoration is a theoretical possibility, a project that lies within the bounds of the laws of physics as we understand them, which is more than can be said for all of Bedford's peers. They are gone to the grave and oblivion, beyond any hope of a renewed life in the future.

Jeanne Louis Calment is listed as the longest-living (verified) human being in history. She was born on February 1875 and died on 4 August 1997, at the age of 122 years, 164 days. As of October 2, 2015, Ms. Calment's record has been broken by cryonaut Dr. James Bedford, who is maintained in cryopreservation by the Alcor Life Extension Foundation.

Bedford was born on April 20, 1893. As of today, October 6, 2015, he has survived for 122 years, 167 days. It is true that Bedford is not currently alive. But neither is he dead. When Alcor transferred him from an old, customized vessel back in 1991, it was clear that the original ice cubes created at the time of preservation were intact. We have no good information on the quality of the ultrastructural preservation of his neural tissue. But we can say that he has remained cryopreserved since 1967, and so deserves the title of longest-surviving human being in history!

Link: http://www.alcor.org/blog/james-bedford-first-cryonaut-is-now-the-longest-surviving-human-being-ever/


It would be interesting to know if they are allowed to scan/ monitor/ or do other non-destructive/ non-modification testing/analysis of James Bedford's 'condition'. Is that written into the cryo contract? - that no attempt should be made to assess/ record/ publish the condition without intention to undertake 'confident' restoration.

Posted by: Jer at October 12th, 2015 7:08 AM

Alcor's claim is utterly dubious.

Although cryopreservation sure is better than resting in a grave, trumpeting a cryopreserved person as being the "longest surviving human" in 2015 is sheer -and despicable- marketing.

Reanimate him, assess his physical and mental health, and then we'll talk.
If Alcor can't walk the talk, it should refrain from making sensationalist claims.

Posted by: Nico at October 13th, 2015 9:59 AM

The logic of this writer's mind escapes me. This man of whom he speaks, is dead, and will remain so until the Resurrection. There will be no regeneration--ever.

Posted by: Sean Mac at October 18th, 2015 10:21 AM

Post a comment; thoughtful, considered opinions are valued. New comments can be edited for a few minutes following submission. Comments incorporating ad hominem attacks, advertising, and other forms of inappropriate behavior are likely to be deleted.

Note that there is a comment feed for those who like to keep up with conversations.