Family traumatised after finding wrong body in casket

·2-min read

A family says they have were traumatised after finding a complete stranger in their loved one's casket.

On Monday, relatives organised a special viewing for Sonya White at a funeral home in the US state of Ohio after she died unexpectedly.

However, when they arrived they quickly realised the body in the casket was not Ms White.

"It was traumatic. No one should have to go through that with their loved one," Ms White’s cousin Lisa Harden told local news station WSYX.

To make matters worse, the stranger inside the casket was dressed in Ms White's clothes, earrings and wig, leaving the family distraught.

Picturred is Sonya White, the woman who died unexpectedly and her already upset family were even more distraught after her funeral.
Sonya White died unexpectedly and her already upset family were even more distraught after her funeral. Source: WSYX

Ms Harden said the family, who were already having a hard time with their grief, all started crying.

Relatives were meant to view Ms White's body at 4.30pm but were told to come back at 6.30pm so the funeral home could swap out the bodies and redress their loved one.

"We wanted closure. But that is not something we will ever get. I never in my life seen something like this before," Ms Harden said.

Ms White's daughter Kourtney White told WSYX her mother died suddenly and the ordeal was already an awful experience — with the mix-up at the funeral home making it worse.

They also expressed sympathy for the other family involved, who were reportedly also very upset.

Pictured is Sonya White's family carrying her casket.
Another person was in Sonya White's casket when her family arrived for the viewing. Source: WSYX

The family said the funeral home did apologise to them.

A similar situation happened to two families in Sydney's west in February last year.

Despina Nicolopoulos thought she was farewelling her husband of 57 years, Angelos, but when she arrived at the church, her daughter realised the man in the coffin was not her father.

At the time, Ms Nicolopoulos told 7News it was a "terrible thing to happen" and she later found out her husband was actually buried hours earlier.

The two men involved in the mix-up were set to have their funerals at different churches.

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