Lifestyle & Belief

Russian woman keeps dead husband's body for three years, asks children to talk to him and feed him


A young child and her mother pictured on October 31, 2010 in Sydney, Australia.


Mark Kolbe

Russian authorities said a woman with five children kept her husband's body in their apartment for almost three years after his death because she believed he "was bound to resurrect."

Prosecutors in the central Yaroslavl region said the woman, who was described as a devout Pentecostal Christian with a psychiatric record, was distraught after her husband died of natural causes in 2009, according to the Associated Press. She kept his body in a bed in a room of the apartment she shared with her children, and asked them to talk to it and feed it.

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"For three years, between August 14, 2009 and July 2, 2012, the corpse was lying in bed in a room in the apartment," investigators said in a statement outlining the results of the probe, reported The Times of India. "All this time the widow continued to live in the apartment with her small children, whom she asked every day to go into the room where her husband's body lay, 'talk' to their father, (and) 'feed' him with a broth she made."

"The children, who were worried for their mother and realized their father was dead, would tell her that he talked to them and ate the food," the statement added.

According to the International Business Times, the family deterred visitors from entering the room where their husband and father laid, saying he was too ill. They also used air fresheners to cover the smell of the decomposing body.

When the family decided to move to another town, two of the children, girls aged 14 and nine, decided to get rid of the body by putting it in plastic bags and dumping it in the bushes, reported The Times of India. The head and right hand broke off while they were moving it, so they threw them into a garbage bin. Authorities launched an investigation after the body parts were found, but have since dropped it. They say the mother does not present a danger to herself or others, and the children have been deemed mentally healthy after a psychological exam.