World’s tallest man in Samoa

By Deidre Fanene ,

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WELCOME TO SAMOA:  Samoa welcomed the World’s Tallest Man in the world yesterday afternoon.

WELCOME TO SAMOA: Samoa welcomed the World’s Tallest Man in the world yesterday afternoon.

Meet Sultan Kosen, the tallest man living in the world.

He holds four world records, the first one is he is the tallest man in the world; his second record is having the largest feet - size 62; the third record he has the largest hands which are nearly  12 inches and the fourth record well, we will never find out because we were not allow to ask.

This was according to Ringmaster Tupa’i Bruno Loyale.

Mr Kosen is from Ankara, Turkey and he is 251cm (8ft 2.8in) and was born on the 10th December 1982.

Mr. Kosen was on the plane for about 30 hours travelling to Samoa to appear inthe Magic Circus which will open its Big Top on the 9th of this month at Tuana’imato.

According to Tupai, the logistics of getting Mr. Kosen to Samoa were not without problems.

“It takes a lot of special  arrangements for him to travel because things are not made for someone of his size,” Tupa’i told the media.

“The bathroom in the airplane for example. We have a special ie lavalava that we hold up for him when he goes to the bathroom.

“We consulted with the airline because he cannot go inside the bathroom of the airline because it’s too small.

 So he has to stand outside and the male attendants have to hold up a curtain for him. It’s a little complicated.

“It sounds funny but at the same time it’s very difficult for him and all the flights have been business class only and the planes must be big.

“However, this flight from Fiji was small plane because we could not get a better connection for him. Hopefully he’s going to be okay for this flight.”

Tupa’i was also asked how he would be able care and arrange for Mr. Kosen’s medicines that are vital for his well being.

“It’s already been dealt with.

“He carries a medical supply for about three months and it has to be refrigerated.

 “The medicines are very expensive and are made in Richmond, Virginia and there are only few people in the world who take this medicine. The government of Turkey pays for his medicine and it’s about USD$10,000a month so it’s very expensive.

“However, the medicines sustain his life and keep him from growing. in the last three years he’s grown another inch so if it wasn’t for that medicine he’ll probably have grown one or two feet. He’s still growing but because of the medicine, it slows it the growth down.

“He also has two injections a week.  His brother comes with him because he’s the one who gives him the injection to keep him from growing.

Mr Kosen’s growth and massive height is caused by a condition known as "pituitary gigantism", which is the result of an over-production of growth hormone. Growth hormone is released from the pituitary gland in the brain; if the gland is damaged by, say, a tumour, it can release too much (or too little) hormone. The effects of over-production includes large hands, a thickening of the bones, and painful joints. 

Mr Kosen didn't start his incredible growth spurt until he was 10 years old. But he finally appears to have stopped growing. Revolutionary gamma-knife surgery on the tumour affecting his pituitary gland, provided by the University of Virginia, USA, in August 2010, has finally halted his production of growth hormone. 

 “I also got the chance to spend time with his parents and they are absolutely lovely people,” said Tupa’i.

“His mother is very short and his father is about five foot six and yet their big baby is 8ft, 4inches so he’s still a momma’s boy.

“He has three brothers and one sister and he is the middle child.”

Tupa’I said he is sure that Mr. Kosen will be the centre of attention at his Magic Circus.

“Sultan will be as the super attraction where people can see with their own eyes the  Guinness Book of Record holder and of course when you think of the planet Earth, we are talking about billions of people and of all those people, he is the tallest person in the world,” Tupai said.

“So  what he does is,he just comes out and says hello he gives people the opportunity to have a picture with him because he’s very special.

“He will with be us for one month in the circus in Upolu and then we will be going to American Samoa for another month and then we fly to New Caledonia.”

As for food Tupai said Mr Kose’s favourite food is chicken.

“He doesn’t eat pork at all and he eats a very small amount of other meat,” he said.

“He eats mostly chicken because he loves it; he eats about two or three times the amount of food that we eat.

“He also loves salad and so we’ve got it because we know what he likes and we know how much the portion is and he feels very comfortable with us.

“We also know how to take care of him in terms of resting. We have a 10 foot bed and a big chair all ready for him during his stay here in Samoa.”

Bringing such a special person to Samoa was difficult,” Tupa’i said.

“Initially we were not going to bring Sultan just for Samoa because it’s a very expensive show to operate.

“In some countries we can charge admission much, much higher; the equivalent of USD $20-$30 then that allows us to spend more money and bring more people to this big show.

“So it’s a little bit difficult for us here in Samoa because we put our admission a little bit lower so that everyone has the chance to see the circus.

“Then once we leave, our admission goes a bit higher.

“But I really wanted to bring Sultan here to Samoa because I want the people of Samoa to see him and I didn’t want to leave him out of our programme.

“It is very expensive for us to bring him and we don’t have any help from airlines.”

According to the Guinness World Record Book, Mr. Kosen is a part time farmer.

The part-time farmer was the first man over 8 ft (2.43 m) to be measured by the Guinness World Records in over 20 years. 

Indeed, the G.W.R. Book only knows of 10 confirmed or reliable cases in history of humans reaching 8 ft or more. 

Sultan first became the world's tallest living man in 2009, when he measured 246.5 cm (8 ft 1 in) in height. 

He took the title from Xi Shun (China, b. 1951), who measured 2.361 m (7 ft 8.95 in) in height when measured in 2005. 

Sultan also holds the record for largest hands of a living person, each one measuring 28.5 cm (11.22 in) from the wrist to the tip of the middle finger. 

He previously held the record for largest feet on a living person, with his left foot measuring 36.5 cm (1 ft 2 in) and right foot measuring 35.5 cm (1 ft 1.98 in). 

Speaking at the time of his entry into the Guinness World Records family he said: 'I never imagined I would be in the book, I dreamed about it, but it was still a huge surprise'. 

The rest of his family, including his mum and dad, are all 'normal' sized. 

Because of his extreme height he was never able to finish school but works occasionally as a farmer to support his family. 

He describes one of the advantages of being tall as being able to help out his mum out with jobs such as changing a broken light bulb and hanging curtains. 

Disadvantages to his height he lists include not being able to find clothes or shoes that fit or finding it extremely hard to fit into a regular size car. 

Like every young man in their twenties, Sultan enjoys listening to music, playing computer games and watching movies. 

What are the giant's dreams for the future? "I want what everyone else wants," says Sultan. "A wife, a family, a nice home. I'd also like the chance to find some decent clothes that fit! I've already had a suit made for me, and at least one dream has come true: I now own a pair of jeans made especially for me!" 

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