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Yes, Trinidadian man embalmed without coffin, sitting on chair for own funeral

Two photos posted on the Facebook page “South Africa Latest News and Jokes” show a man sitting on a chair, his hands on his thighs, wearing sunglasses and a suit with a pink jacket and white trousers.

In one, he is on the bed of a truck. In the other, he is outside a building, in the same pose, on a small section of cordoned-off fake grass.

“Dead man sits at own funeral,” the photos’ startling description reads. “No coffin burial.”

The photos were posted on 27 November 2020 and racked up more than 1.4 million views in just a few hours.

But Facebook’s fact-checking system has flagged the post as possibly false. Is it for real? We checked.

Extreme embalming bars corpse from church

A Google reverse image search of the photos led Africa Check to an article on Loop, a website based in the Caribbean island country of Trinidad and Tobago.

“Extreme Embalming comes to T&T as Dennie’s shakes up the industry,” the headline reads.

The article reports that Dennie’s Funeral Home in Port of Spain on Trinidad island “threw T&T and the funeral industry into a stir” on 25 November, “when they positioned a corpse in a seated position on a chair in the church”.

The body was reportedly of Che Lewis, who was murdered on 14 November.

“The family requested it but it was something we had on our bucket list to do so when the request came it wasn’t foreign to us because we are aware of funerals like that abroad,” Cochese Tyler Dennie, the funeral home’s managing director, told Loop.

The article adds that in Puerto Rico, the “modern trend, known as extreme embalming, is said to have first appeared in 2008 as a more celebratory send-off”.

A Google search for “Dennie’s Funeral Home” led us to the company’s Facebook page, where they posted a video of Lewis’s funeral. The seated corpse is clearly shown, positioned outside the doors of a church next to a photo of Lewis in life.

“Due to the unique funeral, the church was astonished and refused the entrance of Che,” the video’s caption reads. – Africa Check


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