Hello to all those faithfully reading and hopefully enjoying this effort to make even the worst horror movie more watcha... aw, screw that - I'm not that good. If a movie makes you cringe because yet another batch of unlikable teens that are pushing 30 are inching toward their deaths, having a party no one does anywhere ever, a paranormal movie is boring you to tears with unending pans of empty rooms, or thanks to CGI technology when people finally bite it, their blood squirts everywhere except on the victim, the ground, the people next to them... you're in good company and this is the right place for you.

Thursday, August 8, 2013


People Waking Up After Being Declared Dead

We had a motto when, back in another lifetime I worked with Emergency Services on a rural ambulance. No one was dead unless they were warm and dead. Apparently that rule isn't followed by everyone. All around the world there have been instances where people, having been declared dead sometimes for hours, have 'woken up' when moved to, say, either their coffin (no embalming done of course) or when held. Too often these same poor people soon die 'again' - some from the reason they died in the first place, others from shock. Why are people 'waking up' from being so-called 'dead'?

Well, most of these stories happen in countries that have inferior medical care. The doctors are either severely understaffed or untrained. In a lot of cases, it's the family of the sick or injured person that 'declares' them dead, a doctor never seeing them at all. And, as I said, some were just plain in shock and cold and 'come back to life' when warmed up.

Is this why some people have what are called Wakes before the funeral? They used to be in the house of the deceased, now mostly they happen at funeral homes. A wake (Irish: faire) is a ceremony associated with death. It is often a social rite which highlights the idea that the loss is one of a social group and affects that group as a whole. The English word 'wake' originated from Middle English wakien, waken, from Old English wacan, to wake up and wacian, to be awake, keep watch. So the whole 'watch 'em and see if they wake up' thing is mostly an urban legend (but I'm sure a close eye is kept on 'em anyway).

And you've probably heard of other things to assure the dead are really dead - the bells attached to the tombstone, a string to the dead one's hand - if you heard the tinkle of the bell - run. Just kidding. There's even been some things as elaborate as a TV monitor both in the coffin and on the tombstone. However, the burial sites that have 'cages' over them were not made to keep the dead in, rather, at that time body snatching was very common and the families wanted to make sure their loved ones were undisturbed.

Okay, so has anybody 'woken' in the US? Most bodies are turned over to morgues and embalming happens soon after so that pretty much slims down the chances but in New York... A woman who was an organ donor was declared brain dead but moments before they began to 'harvest', she woke up. This was in July of this year people, according to lifesitenews.com. 

This person wanted to be buried in their bedroom so...
Another was about to have her organs harvested when it was noticed that she responded to pain (brain dead patients cannot do that) and her lips and tongue were moving. Was the hospital slammed hard for this? Nope. Health Department investigators found that staff committed a series of mistakes and miscommunications and was fined $6,000.00. Hell you can't even WALK into a hospital for that amount. Did the family sue? Well, uh, you see the reason she was in a coma in the first place was because of a suicide attempt - which she tried again, successfully this time a year later so it was all dropped.

I wish I could say this was the only incident, but patients waking before organs being harvested happens often enough that if I am ever in that position, they better be damn sure to do every test they can think of to make sure I AM dead before they take anything.

So what about other countries? Well, as often as it happens I am inclined to believe more in the failings of medicine than believing in miracles.

A newborn baby named Luz Milagros has astonished doctors and police as she recovers in an Argentinean hospital. Her name, which translates to "Miracle Light," is rather fitting, considering the baby girl was pronounced dead 20 minutes after she was born, only to be discovered alive in a coffin in the morgue 12 hours later. Five medical professionals involved have been suspended pending an official investigation. Oh, and all who touched the baby after it started to move said it felt like ice. Remember they're not dead until...

A South African man reportedly woke up in a refrigerated morgue 21 hours after being declared dead from an asthma attack. Months later, news broke that a 60-year-old Brazilian woman woke up after two hours in a refrigerated body bag. Cold, cold, cold.

Sometimes the shock of being 'dead' is enough to kill you. Fagilyu Mukhametzyanov, 49, was wrongly declared dead by doctors, but she actually died after hearing people pray for her soul in Kazan, Russia. She was taken back to a hospital where she was declared dead, this time for good. A premature baby declared dead woke up before his own funeral before dying shortly after in Paraguay.

The famous 'KISS' coffin, dubbed by Gene Simmons as 'a
very expensive cooler'. The only one in 'use' was
donated to Dimebag Darrell, who was killed in 2004.
A two year-old toddler who was pronounced dead, sat up on his coffin during his funeral and asked his father for a drink of water before laying lifeless in the coffin once again, according to Brazilian news sources Kelvin Santos was declared deceased after he stopped breathing due to complications from bronchial pneumonia at Aberlardo Santos Hospital in the northern Brazilian city of Belem. SBT, one of Brazil's leading TV networks, reported that while awaiting for the body to be released into family custody, the infant was placed in an airtight body bag for three hours. 

The family gathered for an open-casket wake later that day, where, according to the two year-old's aunt, during which the infant repeatedly "appeared to move", before apparently sitting at up and asking his father for a drink of water. But a few seconds later, the little boy's body fell back in the casket and the family couldn't revive him again. He was pronounced dead a second time.

One almost died as she found herself in a locked morgue after she was pronounced dead following a Caesarean section. She was there for two hours in the cold morgue until someone heard her and let her out. Besides this rude awakening (sorry) she also claims the doctors treated her cruelly (surprise, surprise). Although she has demanded an investigation, no doctors have been questioned, the one who let her out of the morgue has disappeared, and she is getting absolutely no cooperation.

A similar case in South Africa saw a man put on ice in a morgue for 24 hours, when his family thought he was dead as they couldn’t wake him. However, doctors were not called to pronounce the victim, Mr. Kupelo, dead. When he awoke in the morgue and screamed for help, Gawker said he recounted that the attendants 'ran for their lives'.

A 65-year-old heart attack victim in Yemen had been washed and wrapped in special cloth, according to Muslim tradition. Mourners had placed him in his grave, and were preparing to cover him with dirt, when the man suddenly came to. He was not amused. "You want to kill me and bury me alive," he shouted, according to the Alettejah news website. After the shock wore off, mourners gave the no-longer-dead man fresh clothes, and turned the funeral into a party.

Two weeks after falling and suffering a head injury, Li Xiufeng, 95, was found lying motionless in her home by a neighbor. The friend couldn't wake her up. She was placed in a coffin and, according to local custom, was supposed to rest there for several days before the funeral. A day before the burial, her neighbor went to check on the coffin, and Li was gone. "I slept for a long time," she reportedly told her fellow villagers. "After waking up, I felt so hungry, and wanted to cook something to eat." Apparently, a doctor said, the tradition of waiting days before burial saved her. Another custom - the ritual burning all of a dead person's possessions -did not work in her favor.

Coffin of the future?
A Venezuelan man, Carlos Camejo, was declared dead after a highway accident in 2007. Before his wife could arrive to identify the body, medical examiners began an autopsy. Camejo who had been declared dead woke up in the morgue in excruciating pain after medical examiners began an autopsy. They cut into his face, and were surprised as fresh blood poured out. They quickly started sewing the incision, and Camejo regained consciousness. "I woke up because the pain was unbearable," Camejo told a local newspaper. When his wife arrived to identify him, she found Camejo waiting for her in the corridor.

So young ones remember - you're not dead until you're warm and dead - and hopefully fully tested as to whether you have actually expired or not.