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article imageOp-Ed: Mourners celebrate as man wakes up at his own funeral

By Elizabeth Batt     May 12, 2012 in Odd News
Luxor - Mourning turned to celebration at a funeral in Egypt, when Hamdi Hafez al-Nubi suddenly woke up after being declared dead by hospital officials.
The 28 year-old waiter from the village of Naga al-Simman in the southern province of Luxor, apparently suffered a heart attack while working and was pronounced at the hospital.
But when grieving relatives following Islamic tradition, took the man's body home to wash and prepare his body for burial last Friday, a doctor called in to sign the death certificate, discovered the man was still warm, and alive.
The Washington Post said upon hearing the news, the man's mother promptly fainted. Both mother and son were promptly revived by the doctor and were soon celebrating with guests.
Hamdi Hafez al-Nubi's awakening was a little less rude than that of Fagilyu Mukhametzyanov, 49, of Russia. According to the Daily Mail, the woman returned from the dead while she was in her coffin. Mukhametzyanov awoke as mourners filed past her to pay their respects and was so shocked by the scene, she suffered a heart attack and died, again.
But not much can top the 2011 experience of a 60-year-old South African man who reawakened to find himself on a refrigerated gurney in a morgue some 21 hours after suffering an asthma attack. When the man passed out, his family instead of calling emergency personnel, called a mortuary instead. Workers at the morgue promptly collected the body and placed it in their refrigerator.
When the man awoke cold and screaming, morgue workers were so mortified they ran for their lives. After returning with co-workers, the unidentified man was finally taken off ice, warmed up and sent home. According to ABC News, rather than celebrating, the man most likely will spend his days convincing his superstitious neighbors that he isn't a ghost.
Of course the fear of being buried alive is something every person entertains at some point in their lives, and it's not entirely irrational. Before advanced medical practices, being interred and then reawakening, did occur. See "10 Horrifying Premature Burials."
In 1905, the English reformer William Tebb, even published a book called Premature Burial and how it May be Prevented, after collecting accounts of several cases of premature interments.
All told, Tell unearthed 219 cases of near live burial, 149 actual live burials, 10 cases of live dissection and 2 cases of awakening while being embalmed.
As a preventative measure, in the 18th and 19th centuries, coffins with safety mechanisms were promptly manufactured. Fitted with a special mechanism, it allowed coffin occupants to raise a flag and alert those persons above ground that they had been buried alive. One cannot even begin to imagine how long mourning family members stood in observation.
Premature interment in the modern world is improbable, but as the cases above show, not impossible. Mentioned in the 1877 British Medical Journal, was the case of a woman who was declared dead and then interred. Three days after her burial, when the crypt was reopened to receive another body:
"Clothes which covered the unfortunate woman were torn to pieces, and [...] she had even broken her limbs in attempting to extricate herself from the living tomb."
Even in death it appears, location, location, location is crucial. If a 'dead person' doesn't wake up in exactly the right place at exactly the right time, how would you know they had been buried alive?
Best pick that burial plot very, very carefully.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of
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