Declared dead at her home, a 20-year-old Detroit woman opens eyes — shortly before funeral home staff prepare her for embalmment.
An investigation is underway after a young woman who had been declared dead was found alive hours later.
The woman, identified as Timesha Beauchamp, is now clinging to life on a ventilator at a Detroit hospital.
The shocking incident began unfolding after paramedics responded to Timesha’s suburban Detroit home, where they found her not breathing.
Paramedics then performed C.P.R. for around 30 minutes, during which they consulted a doctor who ‘pronounced the patient deceased.’
A statement from Southfield Fire Chief Johnny Menifee read:
“Given medical readings and the condition of the patient, [paramedics] determined at that time that she did not have signs of life.”
But then, more than an hour later, came a startling discovery at the James H. Cole funeral home — Miss Timesha was still alive!
The funeral home’s staff also called an emergency medical crew who confirmed Timesha was breathing.
Geoffrey Fieger, the lawyer Timesha’s family hired, said:
“They were about to embalm her, which is most frightening, had she not had her eyes open.”
“The funeral home unzipping the body bag…they saw her alive with her eyes open.”
Fieger added that Timesha was born with cerebral palsy and has always needed constant medical care.
Speaking to ClickOnDetroit, the mother said the harrowing ordeal has devastated her family.
The mother said:
“My heart is so heavy. Somebody pronounced my child dead. And she’s not even dead. She’s in the hospital.”
She told the news outlet that she received the heartbreaking news that her daughter was ‘dead’ while at home.
“I told them, ‘Are you absolutely, 100 percent sure that she’s gone?’ They said, ‘Yes, ma’am.'”
However, several hours later, she got a call from the funeral home, saying her daughter was alive and breathing.
Jocelyn K. Coley, a spokeswoman for the James H. Cole Home for Funerals, confirmed that the funeral home had received clearance from the Oakland County medical examiner’s office to pick up Ms. Beauchamp’s body.
“Upon her arrival at the funeral home, our staff confirmed she was breathing and called E.M.S.”
“Our thoughts and prayers are with this young woman and her family.”
It’s not unheard of for paramedics to declare people dead only to find them alive hours later.
In 2018, responders pronounced a South African woman dead at the scene of a car wreck. But hours later, mortuary staff found her breathing, the New York Times reported.