Nebraska funeral staff call 911 after discovering ‘corpse’ was still breathing

Police in Lincoln, Nebraska, are investigating why a 74-year-old woman was pronounced dead but then found to actually be alive in a local funeral home on Monday.

The town’s firefighting and rescue teams responded to the Butherus-Maser & Love funeral home at 11.43am after the caller said CPR was being performed on what was initially thought to be the corpse of Constance Glantz.

Glantz had been pronounced dead two hours earlier by staff at a nursing home who had expected her to pass away after entering hospice, according to Lancaster county’s chief deputy sheriff, Ben Houchin.

While preparing Glantz for funeral arrangements, a member of the staff noticed she was still breathing and called 911.

Glantz was later brought back to the hospital, and her family was notified. She remained alive for several hours but died later that day, according to the Lancaster county sheriff’s office.

An investigation is now under way, but Houchin said that investigators had not found any criminal intent or determined if any laws were broken. It was not clear exactly who had jumped the gun on declaring Glantz dead.

Neither the nursing home nor the funeral home have commented.

Houchin called it a “very unusual case”, adding he had “been doing this 31 years and nothing like this has ever gotten to this place before”, according to the local news station KETV.

“There’s been people we’ve gone to and found before, but nothing like this has ever happened,” Houchin reportedly said.

Last year, Bella Yolanda Montoya Castro, 76, was declared dead at a hospital in Ecuador – but she was later found to be alive and knocking on her coffin during her own wake in the city of Babahoyo.

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“I lifted up the coffin, and her heart was pounding, and her left hand was hitting the coffin,” her son later said. “We called 911 to bring her … to the hospital.”

In that case, the woman had been admitted to hospital with a possible stroke and cardiopulmonary arrest and was declared dead when she did not respond to resuscitation efforts.

Ecuadorian health officials later said that a national technical committee had been formed “to initiate a medical audit to establish responsibilities for the alleged confirmation of death”.

The Guardian

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