One of the oldest men in Ireland has died at the age of 108.

Michael O'Connor, who was alive during the 1916 Rising and the subsequent War of Independence, died in Kenmare Community Hospital in County Kerry on Sunday morning, a friend of his family confirmed. 

O'Connor, who was believed to be the oldest living man in Ireland, was born in Glencar in south Kerry in 1913 and would have celebrated his 109th birthday on October 21. 

The family friend told RTÉ that O'Connor lived in "rude good health" at his home in Muckross until very recently. 

O'Connor left Ireland as a young man and went on to serve as a radio operator during the Second World War, surviving the sinking of his ship by a German U-boat. He also survived the Japanese blockade of the Bay of Bengal in the Pacific Theater. 

O'Connor was one of the oldest living survivors of the Spanish Flu pandemic 1918-1920 having contracted the illness as a young boy. He recovered from the illness, but his mother tragically did not.

Remembering the Irish Civil War, O'Connor recalled "families against families", adding that "a lot of bitterness prevailed". 

Last year, he told RTÉ that the secret of a long life was to "be honest in your dealings" and "try to avoid doing wrong by anybody".