When a 70-year-old grandmother died, her family mourned her loss. She was a stalwart figure in the family and someone who always knew what to say, espousing wisdom everywhere she went. When she died, her family felt the loss severely and prepared to bring her to the mortuary where she was going to be cremated. However, just as she was about to be reduced to ashes, her beloved husband noticed something that everyone else had missed – the 70-year-old grandmother was still breathing.
Because she was thought to be dead, grandmother Phinji Sopajorn was brought to her local temple where she was kept in a cold coffin for three days in tandem with her Buddhist beliefs. She had her funeral and was observed in an open coffin.
Eventually, the time came for her to be cremated. That’s when her husband, 73-year-old Thawin Sopajorn, started to wash her face with a damp cloth, which is part of the traditional funeral rites. He was tearful during the process but had resigned himself to the inevitable – that she was deceased and he would have to live life without her.
However, reality was turned on its head just moments before she was set to be cremated. Her husband noticed that she was breathing. It was gentle, but it was distinct. He also noticed that her eyelids were flickering. Without a doubt, she was alive – she wasn’t dead as everyone had thought.
Without missing a beat, Sopajorn called for someone to come help his wife. He loved her so much that he wanted to do everything in his power to bring her back from the dead. Paramedics arrived and performed CPR on the old woman. However, it did not take them long to declare that she was indeed alive. It was a miracle for the elderly man to find that his wife had not left this plane of existence yet.
After the paramedics helped revive her, the family took Mrs. Sopajorn home and gave her hot water bottles to help warm her body. They blew a warm fan onto her skin. They needed to revive her from the cold coffin she’d been in for three days.
Looking back over the first few days of her “death,” Mr. Sopajorn realized that he’d seen some signs that she was not dead. Her body had not stiffened, for example. However, he was stuck in grief, so he did not see the obvious signs that she was alive.
“After she stopped breathing on Sunday, we put her into the coffin, and I thought it was strange that her body was not stiff. I bathed her, and her body still moved. During the funeral, I was the last person to touch her before the cremation. I wished for her to live a happy next life, and then I saw her eyes start to move. I am so glad that I was right about her being alive. I gave her a hug and called my children, but they thought I had a hallucination.
“However, they had to believe me as my daughter-in-law, who is a doctor, checked and confirmed that she was alive, but her pulse was very weak.”
Because the doctor called the paramedics, they arrived promptly and got to work to help revive the grandmother.