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Monday, August 24, 2020

Detroit woman originally ruled dead found alive at funeral home

‘They were about to embalm her which is most frightening had she not had her eyes open.’

A Michigan woman declared dead early Sunday morning was found very much alive hours later at a funeral home. 

Timesha Beauchamp, a 20-year-old special needs woman from Southfield, suffered a heart attack Sunday morning at her home. According to local ABC affiliate WXYZ, paramedics performed CPR and tried to revive her. But after 30 minutes, she was declared dead based on her “medical readings and condition,” the report states. 

“They said, ‘Ma’am, she’s gone,‘”  the woman’s mother told NBC affiliate WDIV said. “I told them, ‘Are you absolutely, 100% sure that she’s gone?’ They said, ‘Yes, ma’am, she’s gone.‘”

Beauchamp was transported to the James H. Cole Home for Funerals in Detroit, but after 90 minutes, staff discovered she was still alive. 

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EMS was called and she was transported to a local hospital, where she is currently receiving treatment and on a ventilator, Detroit Free Press reports. 

“You could tell she was breathing,” Cole spokeswoman Jocelyn Allen said. “You can see a chest going up and down. They could see that.”

“They said, ‘Ma’am, your daughter is on her way to Sinai Grace Hospital. She is breathing. She is alive,’ ” Beauchamp’s mother said.

“I said, ‘What do you mean? What do you mean she’s breathing?’ She said, ‘Ma’am, she’s in the hospital,’ ” she added.

“I haven’t slept all night. I just don’t know what to do. My heart is so heavy,” Beauchamp’s mother said.

“They were about to embalm her which is most frightening had she not had her eyes open. They would have begun draining her blood to be very, very frank about it,” family attorney Attorney Geoffrey Fieger told WXYZ. “It’s one of people’s worst nightmares to imagine having an ambulance called and instead, sending you off to a funeral home in a body bag.” 

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The Southfield Fire Department released a statement saying they followed proper protocols. 

The city is “currently conducting a thorough internal investigation in addition to the Oakland County Medical Control Authority, which will be reporting their findings to the State of Michigan Bureau of EMS, Trauma, and Preparedness,” according to the statement. 

“How did this happen? Everyone wants to know this,” Southfield Fire Batallion Chief Chris Smith told NBC News.

James H. Cole Funeral Home said its “thoughts and prayers are with this young woman and her family.”

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