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This 101-year-old D-Day veteran casually broke a skydiving world record

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A 101-year-old D-Day veteran casually broke a world record Sunday, becoming the oldest person in the world to skydive. 

 Last year Verdun Hayes tried skydiving for the first time to celebrate his 100th birthday. 


"I thought to myself, 'This is queer, I can’t see nothing.' It didn’t dawn on me for a while until I realized we were in a cloud," he told The Telegraph, describing his first skydiving experience. 

But this year, Hayes decided to return to the skies and completed a tandem skydive from 15,000 feet. Members of his extended family, including Hayes' son, grandson, great-grandson and great-granddaughter joined him for the jump at an airfield in Honiton, England.

By successfully completing his jump Hayes, who is 101 years and 38 days old, broke the standing Guinness World Record held by Canada’s Armand Gendreau. Gendreau completed his jump in 2013 at the age of 101 years, three days.

After landing, Hayes told reporters he was "absolutely over the moon." 

Hayes served in the British Army during World War II and was awarded France's Legion of Honor. Sunday's jump helped raise money for the veteran's organization, the Royal British Legion. 

The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

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