Belgian Widow Sleeps With Husband's Decaying Corpse For A Year After His Death

on November 21 2013 10:46 PM
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The unnamed widow failed to report her husband's death after he died from an asthma attack. Reuters

Belgium authorities discovered a stomach-churning scene after being sent to an apartment by a concerned landlord.

Officials were sent to the home of a couple due to the landlord claiming they hadn’t paid any rent in a year. Upon inspection of the home, it was found that the widowed tenant had been sleeping beside her dead husband’s decomposed body for a year. According to Caters News Agency, 79-year-old "Marcel H." of Liege, Belgium, died in November 2012 due to an asthma attack. So overwhelmed with grief, his 69-year-old wife didn’t report his death, keeping his body in the bed until Belgian police made the discovery on Tuesday, Nov. 19.

"A body can mummify in a dry, warm environment," Philippe Boxho, pathologist at the Forensic Center of Liege told Caters. "It takes at least a week to reach such a state. In this case the body had rotten [sic] in the bed [and] his internal organs had melted and liquefied. ... Even though the smell of human decay is quite specific, many people equate that smell to the smell of garbage and once the body has become rotten the smell does decrease significantly.”

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