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Last Updated: Thursday July 30 2009 12:08 GMT

Hundreds at oldest man's funeral

Henry Allingham

Hundreds of people gathered for the funeral of the world's oldest man, and one of Britain's last survivors of the First World War, Henry Allingham.

Mr Allingham was 113 when he died 12 days ago. He was buried with full military honours in Brighton.

He was one of the founder members of the Royal Air Force, and his funeral was followed by a flypast of five replica World War One aircraft.

Henry Allingham died in his sleep at St Dunstan's care home for ex-service men.

Since his death, the last WWI veteran in Britain, Harry Patch, has also died.

Because Mr Allingham was in both the Navy and the Air Force, his coffin was carried into the church by three people in the Royal Navy and three in the RAF.

Henry Allingham's coffin
Servicemen carried Mr Allingham's coffin into the church

One of his grandsons, David Gray, 61, who lives in Michigan, said beforehand that his family wanted to celebrate his incredible life.

"We have had the benefit of hearing of his experiences of historic events... and that is tremendous," he said.

"He remembered seeing King George riding on horseback, witnessing the first aeroplane fly overhead and having lunch on board the Titanic.

"Who else has had those experiences?"