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A man who claimed the Guinness World Record title for having the world’s longest nose has died aged 75. Mehmet Özyürek, from Turkey, had previously said to “love” his nose, which officials said measured 8.8cm (3.46in) from bridge to tip.

Mr Özyürek fell ill last week and suffered a heart attack before he was due to undergo brain surgery, according to local reports.

The funeral service has already taken place in the city of Artvin, located in north-east Turkey, the newspaper Mynet wrote.

Mr Özyürek’s grieving son, Barış, thanked his father’s fans and the local community for the affection shown.

He reportedly said: “I sincerely thank the people of Artvin and their fans. We have pain.

“My father was very kind-hearted, he tried not to offend anyone. My father was not only at peace with his nose, he was at peace with his life.”

Mr Özyürek, whose nose’s length was equivalent to that of a playing card, was proud of what he called his special “feature”, which he said allowed him to smell scents his family and friend could not detect.

His record nose was first acknowledged by the Guinness World Records in 2001, when they measured it in LA.

The officials measured Mr Özyürek’s nose again in 2010 and Italy and finally in 2021 to confirm his record remains unbeaten.

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Speaking to the Guinness World Records in 2021, Mr Özyürek, said: “I love it, this feature. The world likes it, Guinness World Records likes it, of course, my wife likes it too.”

He added at the time: “My sense of smell is different from other people.

“I say, ‘There is a smell here’. Other people say, ‘We don’t smell that smell’. I say, ‘You may not smell it but I can’.”

Doctors could not explain the reason behind his exceptionally long nose – but Mr Özyürek thought it was simply down to genetics.

He said: “There was no explanation by doctors, but I have it in my family, so my father has it, my uncles have it, I have it.” His children, however, didn’t inherit this special feature.

While he “learned to live in peace” with his nose, prior to his death Mr Özyürek acknowledged some had called him “Big Nose” to upset him.

He added: “God made me like this, there is nothing that can be done in this situation.

“I learned to live in peace with my physique. I am extremely pleased to represent Turkey, the Black Sea or Artvin on an international scale.”