18 People On The Time They Found A Dead Body

From this AskReddit thread.

1. A father.

I watched my dad die in our living room when I was 7, nearly 2 minutes after kissing him on the head and telling him I loved him.

He was an alcoholic and suffered from pancreatic cancer and liver failure.

2. Went for a walk.

As an apartment manager, I’ve been the one to discover several bodies. The one that stands out most to me was a very old woman who lived by herself. She was still very active and would walk about 5 blocks to the nearest store almost every day. We had a particularly cold and snowy winter and apparently that was not enough to deter her from her trip to the store. She made it to the store, and all the way back to her front porch where apparently she sat down to catch her breath. She never did. I found her a couple hours later laying on her side in the snow that was piled up on her porch. Her skin was blue and ice cold. Just a surreal scene.

3. Rock climbing.

I had just finished rock climbing with a friend when i heard someone screaming like I’ve never heard before or since. The area I was at had hiking accessible trails to the summit of a fairly tall cliff. A girl he was with had slipped off and fallen off the edge. I was among the first people there and I was still wearing my climbing harness. You could see where she had landed about 70+ feet below, and i was able to repel down to her. When i saw her up close i remembered seeing her earlier that day doing some sight seeing with friends. She was pretty. She didn’t survive and according to her one friend that stayed she was only 16. It was an unfortunate event but I did would I could and helped out as much as possible.

4. Call 999.

Found my wife after she committed suicide. Called 999 (UK emergency services), operator had me check if she was still breathing (she wasn’t).

We were going through a divorce process and on the morning of March 6, 2008 she was supposed to go to the mediator but didn’t. It was a mutual and uncontested breakup so we still talked. So far as I know her last words to anyone were “brb, reboot” over MSN Messenger. I got home from a busy day at work at 5pm and found a note on the door saying “CALL 999, SORRY”.

I freaked, opened the door and found that she had hanged herself from the balcony. I called 999 as I said, they had me see if she was still breathing (how the fuck am I supposed to know?). The operator told me how to tell (you tend to go full derp in this situation) and I determined that “I don’t know, I don’t think so…” A paramedic was dispatched along with the police. They arrived 10 or 15 minutes later.

All the while I sat in the hallway outside the flat crying, I didn’t want to be in the flat or anything. I heard the sirens and went to meet the paramedics and then the police. They took me to the station (seriously) in the back seat of the patrol car. I wasn’t in trouble or anything but there were two cops and they frown if you sit on centre console. I called my dad and told him what I knew, crying all along.

They took my statement and then took me home at like 9pm. The coroner was there to take more info from me and to say “if you need anything, call us. no, seriously. Call us. In fact, if you want SMS me, here’s my mobile #.”

One of the paramedics left their used gloves in the kitchen, which I found the next morning.
Sleep? nope.

I emailed my boss late at night telling him I wouldn’t be in and that I don’t know when I would next be in. He offered to meet up the next morning so I wouldn’t be alone.

I was due to move out at the end of March anyways and had my plans set well before the 6th so all I had to do was last the few weeks in the flat where my wife hanged herself and where I found her. I had nowhere to go or stay with so I stayed there. A friend came over a week later to help clean and box things up for removal and it wasn’t until then, when the layout of the room changed, that I stopped freaking out at seeing the spot.

That was a shitty month, a shitty year and this is a shitty thread.

As an epilogue, the coroner told me she had left a note, asking if I had seen it. I said “derp, it was on the door” and she said there was another one. In it she listed her reasonsposted her “final thoughts”, which I will leave out. She wrote and circled her official last words:

Don’t forget to be awesome!

5. Both parents.

Found both of my parents dead in my house, almost 2 years apart.

Cancer finished off my mom, found her in her chair in the living room, end of January back in ’92. My dad took care of everything then, so there’s not much of a story. I just stayed in my room most of that morning while they came to take her out.

Natural causes got my dad a few days before Christmas in ’93. I was 20. I came home drunk, found him on the toilet. He had been there long enough for the blood to settle. It’s about 6 or 7 steps from the bathroom doorway to the phone, and by the time I got there I was stone fucking sober.

(Adrenaline… is there anything it can’t do?) Called 911, the operator starts asking me to check things to make sure he’s actually dead. I was like, “Look, lady, he’s purple from the waist down! So yeah, I’m pretty fucking sure he’s dead.” Then I called my friends, and they came over with their dads. I went downstairs with my friends so I didn’t have to watch my dad get taken out in a body bag.

Fun times. Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to go watch “Jurassic Bark” to cheer myself up.

6. Same thing.

Weird… except for not being drunk, that’s pretty much exactly how I found my dad. I was 16 though. One of his workmates had called my mom’s house, saying my dad never showed up for work. Not like him. I had answered the phone, so I grabbed my younger brother and his friend who had stayed over, and we drove to my dad’s house. I unlocked the front door and tentatively pushed it open. The bathroom was directly in front of the door, and my dad was off one side of the toilet, leaned against the cabinets. His arms were clenched up by his chest. I ran into the house and pulled his head away from the cabinet. I will never forget the unnatural motion his body made, as he was already in rigor mortis. My brother was already on the phone with 911, but was sobbing hysterically and unable to communicate with them. I went to the phone and gave the dispatcher his address. That’s about all I got out before I lost it. I stayed on the phone till I heard the sirens. He was 54, dead from a heart attack.

Things about it that really messed with me:

1) He had been randomly passing out for the previous few weeks. The doctor put him on a continuous heart monitor to see what was going on. My dad had turned in the results on Friday or Saturday. The doctor had left a frantic message on his answering machine saying he needed to get to a hospital immediately, as his passing out was a result of ventricular fibrillation, aka, heart attack. My dad died sometime Sunday PM/Monday AM, and the message was left Monday afternoon.

2) Being a dumb teenager, I often forgot my key to my dad’s place. So I had a habit of breaking in through the front window next to the door. This happened to me early Monday AM when I went to his house to pick something up. For SOME reason, I decided not to ‘break in’ that day and went back to my mom’s. I really had to fight the ‘what-ifs’ about being there in time to at least try to save him.

3) The last time we had spoken, it was a fight about something stupid. He had tried to nicely say goodbye as he was leaving my mom’s house, and I blew him off.

I had a hard time for several years after, it wasn’t until a few years ago that I felt comfortable talking about it with people. Typing it out now actually feels somewhat therapeutic. This March will be 11 years, and I still miss him all the time. I guess I always will.

7. Like a clown.

Quite a few – Worst two . .

I was charged with getting this guy to pay his rent at a trailer park. Went to his trailer and got no reply from knocks and shit. His car is there – no one’s seen him for a day or two. The curtain on the door is a little ajar so I press my face up to it and cup my hands around my eyes to block the glare and –

There’s a fucking clown laying on a couch just inside the door pointing a fucking revolver at me!! Serious!

Turns out the guy shot himself in the mouth while reclining on the couch. When he slouched and found his final resting place he was still clutching the revolver, which was pointing at the door. It was a day or two since it happened so he was all white with a dark ring all around his mouth from blood (that looked like a clown face makeup in a quick glance). One of the scariest damn things I’ve ever encountered. I HATE clowns. Was pretty shocked.

Second worst was finding a body in flood waters just kinda drifting downstream at a decent clip. I reached out with a boat hook (not a real hook – a boat mooring tool for ropes) to try securing the body beside our boat for retrieval and her arm just pulled right off like well done chicken from a bone. She’d been in the water for a few days . . . BLEEECH

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8. Heroin overdose.

sure my father on the floor of the restroom with a needle in his arm, died of a heroin overdose.

second was my step father died of Emphysema over night, that was more of a shock since he had rigamortis so he died sitting up looking at the door where i was sleeping. i thought he was acting at first so i got close and pushed him, i heard a couple of snapping sounds as he kind of fell back a bit.

9. Southern family.

My best friend had just had an abortion – came from a very strict Southern Baptist family but she had no means to care for the baby and the family already had turned their back on her because she was having a child out of wedlock. She lived 2hr15min from me at the time and we spent many long nights on the phone, me trying to calm her down and support her. She wasn’t doing well and wasn’t in a good place.

One day I saw she had called me several times while I was in class but I didn’t respond. When I got out of class I had several hysterical voicemails from her, saying she couldn’t take it, that she loved me and she was sorry for everything.

I called and called. And called. I got in my car and drove there. And then I found her dead body – she had overdosed. I ran to her and all I can really remember is the sound of her ceiling fan, the whirr as the motor spun the blades around. And just how she wasn’t as cold as I expected her to be. Called 911, they had me try to resuscitate her.

Her parents showed up and blamed everyone but themselves, even me. I will never forget what she looked like, just lying on her side with her arm over her face.

TL;DR: Best friend got an abortion and killed herself – I found her.

10. Uncle.

I discovered my uncles body after he committed suicide.

He had not been answering family members calls for 2 or 3 days, so I swung by his house after work to check on him. Knocked on the door, rang the door bell, heard his dog bark but no answer.
I had no key to his house so I got out a credit card and jimmied the door open that way.
His dog seemed frightened. I go through the kitchen into the living room to see him hunched over his couch.

He was an alcoholic, so I figured he had got wasted and passed out. I looked through the kitchen one more time to see how many beers he had drank or bottles of whiskey. No alcohol at all.
I go over to wake him up and touch him on the back of the neck. Cold, stiff, pale, lifeless. That’s when I noticed some blood stains on the couch, a gun to his right and a bullet hole in the top of his head.

I was pretty fucked up about it for a year. I still have nightmares about it from time to time but not like the first year it happened. I cry every February 17th; the day I found him. I have his dog now. Sometimes it almost pains me to look at the dog because it can lead to memories of what happened that day and the condition I found the dog and my uncle in.

11. Gravity Hill

A little over a year ago my mother and I were driving through a secluded area of the San Fernando Valley, named Gravity Hill. There’s an urban legend that says that if you go up the hill and put your car in neutral, the spirit of dead children carry you toward the top where a cemetary is located.

We were just driving through the area and my mom let out a hideous scream that caused me to hit the brakes immediately. She told me to back the car up slowly and seeing as she was obviously terrified, I did. I stopped the car near what appeared to be a body wrapped in a bloody bed sheet. It was the size of a young girl lying in a fetal position. After a couple of seconds, I slammed on the gas and drove to a nearby police station. The police later confirmed that it was a teenage girl who was gang raped and murdered.

12. Gasp.

I was 16 and my brother was 18. He had his license suspended so I naturally was forced to drive him everywhere. On this evening I had to take him to pick up his girlfriend. We picked her up and were driving to our house.

We lived about 20 miles out of town in a nice rural community. The drive used to be gorgeous but has since been developed (or demolished). There was a light sprinkle and the roads became a little slick. Going into our valley you had to take a winding road with a steep slope.

Years earlier (~1989) another brother drunkenly crashed and totalled my mother’s Bricklin (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bricklin_SV-1) on the same road. He escaped unharmed.

On this day, coming around one of the curves I absentmindedly looked into the ditch and saw a motorcycle. It was a harley and pretty nice. I slow down and my brother tells me to “hurry up and stop fucking around”. I pull over and go look at the bike, bro gets out with me. In the drainage ditch is a man in Biker’s leather. We know him, he’s the father of a girl in our high school.

He’s pale white, lying on his back, mouth agape, and a nasty cut on his head but there doesn’t seem to be any blood. His head looks like it is coming out of his chest as if he were trying to curl into a ball. Later we found out that during the spill he landed on the back of his head which was pushed into his chest, breaking his neck. He was not wearing a helmet but my father said that given the way he fell it probably wouldn’t have saved his neck.

The rain is still sprinkling but everything else is dead quiet as my brother and I stare at this man, both paralyzed or lost in thought. The silence was broken by my brother’s girlfriend’s shriek. She wanted to see what we were doing and had gone into full blown hysteria.

At this point the man gasps for air very suddenly and loudly. We are all caught off guard and startled. This was before cell phones, so we had to drive to the nearest home and call 911. My brother asks me to stay because his girlfriend refused to get out of the car again. They leave and I’m alone with the corpse for about 10 minutes.

Shortly after they return, a highway patrolman comes. He is comforting, but we’re still pretty numb. I tell him about the last gasp of air and he says it is fairly common and that the man was most likely NOT alive when we arrived and that we shouldn’t feel guilty. My father is a doctor and later confirmed that the man’s injuries were in no way survivable.

After the commotion we go home. My mom was a psychologist so she tried to counsel us. This was very annoying, especially 2 years later when my best friend committed suicide and she tried the same thing.

My brother’s girlfriend was bat-shit the rest of the night. She’d look out the window and “see” the corpse walking up the hill. My brother takes her to his room to “watch a movie” which means fornication (we had a big house on 80 acres). I thought it would be hilarious to go outside and start making noises and prance around in the rain acting like a zombie to scare her.

I was successful- she freaked out and starting crying thus cock blocking my bother.

edit: added description of injuries.

TL;DR – Found dead guy, cock blocked bro.

13. Two.

There have been two. One slightly weird, and the other a crash.

The crash was when i was out with my dad going fishing. We came around a bend, and saw two motorbikes smashed all over the road. A husband was holding his wife, and wanted us to go and get help. The other biker (we later found out he was VERY drunk) was gasping for air. It was the most horrible sound i’ve heard. We ran over to him, but he’d stopped gasping. Checked the pulse, and he was dead. Another car had arrived, and they started CPR, but it didn’t help in the end. Since we were out of phone range, my dad and i went to call an ambulance for the woman and her husband. Both survived.

The other, i really have no idea. I was stuffing around on my jetski in a river. I go past this man just lying on the shore. He’s really really pale, and has no shoes on. I called out to him, and he doesn’t answer. So i pull the jetski up to the bank, and kinda prod his legs with my foot, to see if he’s ok. He didn’t stir, so i reluctantly felt for a pulse. (I watch a lot of horror movies. It took quite a bit of my courage to do that. I only had one friend with me, and we were out in the boondocks)

After checking for about 5 minutes, i thought he was dead, so got back on the jetski and went to tell my friend to call the cops. He did, and while he was calling, a car went past. Didn’t think much of it.

We thought we’d better stand by him so the cops would know where he was. So we got on the jetskis and went back. He was gone. Now i’m SURE he was dead, he didn’t just get up and walk away. His face had looked bloated and he wasn’t breathing. The only thing we could come up with was that the car was somehow involved. We told the cops all that, but nothing was ever found of the man or the car.

14. iPod.

I drove up to a car wreck thinking “oh man! This is brutal!” (I was a 16 year old dumbass) and when I saw the drivers head smashed and leaking I turned off my iPod and sweated like a mother fucker until I got back to my house. I didn’t talk to anyone for a while.

15. Undertaker

My aunty is an undertaker. Her words of wisdom: “Never let a cop help you carry a dead body” Because when one did he dropped his end and the body rolled out in front of the grieving family.

16. Never told before.

My first throwaway. Do I get a badge for that?

I worked with the disabled for many years. I had clients who lived in apartments semi-independently. I went on vacation for a week then came back to make my rounds.

I rang the bell but there was no answer. Her roommate was off fucking some ex-con (they prey on disabled people it seems) so nobody had been with her for a couple of days.

I used my key and saw her lying on her bed in her bedroom, TV and lights on. I shook her to wake her up but quickly noticed she had a plastic feel (best way I can describe it). I looked at her face and it was clear to me that she was very dead. Having never seen a dead body apart from wakes I went into crisis mode. It turns out I’m really good in crisis mode. Emotions ceased, procedures scrolled through my head.

Check for a pulse (no, she’s very dead)

Call 911 (she’s dead, is it an emergency? Hurrying won’t help)

Called my boss

When I called him, which was very unusual for that time of night (8pm-ish) he knew something was wrong. Can you stop by so-and-so’s apartment? I asked. What’s wrong? he pushed. Just come over, I said, not wanting to lay this on him over the phone. Tell me nobody died, he said. Just come over, OK?

The police and ambulance arrived, and soon after my boss and his boss. They were freaked but in a trained professional sort of way. Nobody but the paramedics would go into her room. The cop asked where her wallet was which was on the nightstand on the far side of her. I went in and out a few times to gather things for the cops, turn off the tv, etc. I was inches from her and pretending like this was routine. Man, I was the boss that night handling everything like I’d done it 100 times before.

The next day we had a staff meeting where I had to announce what had happened. I started to explain, after an appropriately dramatic pause – and then it hit me. I left the room and just fucking lost it. All the emotions I had suppressed crashed into my head and there I was in the bathroom crying like a baby, trying not to make too much noise.

Being in a caretaker role there were investigations that did not go well. She had what we thought was a non-life threatening illness so she had an emergency alert pendant she wore around her neck. I tested it the next day and it didn’t work. Did she try to use it? I don’t think so but I’ll never know for sure.

No recriminations occurred but I was a fucking mess for a couple of months after. That was by far the worst I’ve ever felt in my life. I thought I’d never feel normal again.

That was over a decade ago and I have never told this story.

17. Several.

I’ve found several actually! I’m a property manager. One day I got a call from the dean of computer science at the local community college. He said he hadn’t heard from a professor in awhile and students need their grades posted, so I agreed to conduct an emergency entry. We called the EMTs and I unlocked the door for them. The smell was overwhelming. Death has a specific smell, and this guy had been dead for a little less than a week but he was already starting to decompose. I saw him lying on the floor in the living room. He was a larger man. His face was pretty much melted into the floor. And during turnover, when we pulled up the blood soaked carpet there were maggots in the floor. It was horrible! He apparently just fell and hit his head. He had no family in the US and apparently few friends.

18. Crossing the border.

My dad found a family who froze to death while crossing the border between Mexico and the United States.

The mom and dad were hovered over the bodies of two children, and an older lady he assumes was the grandma. Believes they got separated from the group over night, this was in the Winter/January time. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

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image – david w

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