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  • The sound of a jingling bell fills the fridge cemetery air.

  • The caretaker holds up his lantern and scans the gravestones.

  • In the back row he can make out the movement of a little brass bell swinging back and forth

  • from a string draped over a recently dug grave.

  • Oh no, he thinks.

  • We've buried another one alive.

  • This may seem like a scene out of a horror story, but in the not so distant past waking

  • up buried alive in a coffin was a real concern.

  • It didn't happen all the time, but enough to make people think of ways to alert the

  • world of the living that they had been buried alive by mistake.

  • We are going to look at some of the most terrifying stories of people who were presumed dead and

  • woke up in a coffin six feet underground.

  • It wasn't until the turn of the 20th century that medical advances made identifying death

  • more reliable.

  • Sometimes doctors mistook things like a coma or paralyzation as death.

  • However, physicians tried their best to ensure someone was actually dead before making a

  • final determination.

  • How they did this could be pretty messed up.

  • In the 18th century there were unique ways of checking if someone was dead or not.

  • Some doctors pinched the nipple of the corpse to see if there was any reaction.

  • However, this was not as reliable as one of the more uncomfortable methods.

  • Some doctors inserted a hot poker into the rectum of the deceased.

  • If there was no discernible sign of life after that it was pretty safe to assume the person

  • was dead.

  • To be fair, if a patient was alive when this happened, they probably would have wished

  • they were dead.

  • Now let's look at some of the most crazy cases of people allegedly being buried alive.

  • The fear of being buried alive is called taphephobia, so if this is you, the rest of this video

  • is going to be a little rough.

  • We start our tales of horror with the shoemaker.

  • The year was 1822 in a small town in Germany.

  • The local shoemaker had recently passed away.

  • It was his family who first discovered his body, and by the looks of it, the shoemaker

  • seemed dead.

  • However, upon examination of the body, rigamortis had yet to set in.

  • This was odd, but no one could awake the shoemaker, so he was presumed dead.

  • The funeral ended and dirt was thrown on the coffin.

  • The family retired from the cemetery to a reception as the gravedigger continued his

  • work of filling in the hole.

  • However, as he approached the last few shovelfuls of dirt, the gravedigger heard what he thought

  • was knocking from under the ground.

  • He quickly plunged his shovel back into the earth and dug out the coffin.

  • When the gravedigger opened the wooden box to check on the man inside his arms were raised

  • up in front of him.

  • The physician was called in to try and help bring the man fully back to life, but he had

  • been buried in his airtight coffin for too long.

  • The shoemaker was most likely asphyxiated as he pounded on his coffin lid to be let

  • out.

  • When the doctor declared the shoemaker dead for the second time he was absolutely sure

  • the shoemaker would not be coming back to life.

  • Our next creepy story is about Philomèle Jonetre.

  • She was a 24 year old French woman who supposedly died in 1867.

  • Philomèle had contracted cholera and was bed ridden for days.

  • Eventually she stopped responding altogether and was presumed dead.

  • The priest was quickly brought to the house where he administered her last sacraments.

  • In those uncertain times the body needed to be removed from the house and buried quickly

  • to stop the spread of disease.

  • 16 hours after her last sacrament she was put in a coffin and buried.

  • As dirt was shoveled on top of the wooden coffin the muffled sound of fists pounding

  • on wood could be heard.

  • Philomèle was still alive, and trying to escape her early grave.

  • When the coffin was dug back up the doctor lit a candle and placed it under Philomèle's

  • nose to see if she was breathing, but the flame stayed lit; indicating there was no

  • air in the lungs.

  • Then something strange happened.

  • The corpse began to twitch slightly and the eyelids seemed to move.

  • The doctor tried to awaken Philomèle, but failed.

  • She was officially pronounced dead the following day.

  • Philomèle may have been buried alive the first time, but this time there was no knocking

  • heard from within the coffin.

  • This next case is more recent, and much more sinister, as the men who buried Stephen Small

  • actually knew he was alive.

  • In 1987 Stephen Small was abducted and held for ransom.

  • The 39 year-old businessman owned and renovated properties, which had made him pretty wealthy.

  • On the night of his abduction, the kidnappers called Stephen's wife at 3:30 a.m. to tell

  • her they had her husband.

  • They said if she wanted him back alive, she needed to pay a ransom of one million dollars.

  • Due to a poor connection Nancy Small couldn't understand what the men on the other line

  • were saying, and therefore, did not move quickly to contact the police or secure the ransom

  • money.

  • The kidnappers had put Stephen Small in a homemade wooden box and buried it underground.

  • They hooked the box up to a breathing tube and even put water in the makeshift coffin.

  • It seemed as if the kidnappers planned on keeping the man alive, at least until the

  • ransom was paid.

  • However, things went terribly wrong.

  • The breathing tube failed, and Stephen Small died from lack of air in the small wooden

  • box.

  • He was buried alive not by accident, but by negligence of the kidnappers.

  • The men who buried Stephen were caught and convicted of first degree murder.

  • But this came as no comfort to the man who was buried alive and died under the cold dirt

  • shoveled on top of his makeshift coffin.

  • Some people who are buried alive get lucky and survive the ordeal.

  • Essie Dunbar was declared dead in 1915 at 30 years old.

  • She had suffered from epilepsy, and one of the seizures was so strong it was thought

  • to have killed her.

  • The doctors examined Dunbar's body and declared her dead.

  • The next day her body was placed in a coffin and a funeral service was held.

  • The coffin was buried, but before the final dirt could be thrown on the grave Dunbar's

  • sister arrived after being delayed in her travels.

  • Dunbar's sister still wanted to pay her last respects and was in hysterics until the

  • grave was dug up, and the body exhumed so she could say goodbye.

  • When the coffin lid was opened Essie Dunbar sat straight up and smiled at everyone who

  • was gathered around.

  • The funeral party most likely was shocked and horrified at almost burying the poor woman

  • alive, but it was a relief that she had not died within the coffin itself.

  • Essie Dunbar lived another 47 years until she finally passed away for real this time.

  • Angel Hays crashed his motorcycle in 1937 sending him crashing headfirst into a brick

  • wall.

  • This accident severely disfigured Angelo's face and everyone presumed he was dead on

  • impact.

  • The coroner decided that the face was too badly disfigured for the parents to view the

  • body, so he declared Angelo deceased and preparations were made for his burial.

  • Three days after the accident Angel Hays was buried.

  • But the insurance company still had questions and needed the body exhumed in order to complete

  • the filing of his accident.

  • Two days after the burial of Angel Hays the coffin was dug up and opened.

  • To the surprise of the medical examiners, the body was still warm.

  • Instead of being dead, Hays was in a deep coma, which actually saved his life.

  • The coma had allowed for Hays' body to need less oxygen to survive.

  • This meant that even though he had been buried alive for two days, he did not asphyxiate

  • to death.

  • The body was immediately taken to the hospital where surgery was conducted.

  • It was a success, and Angelo Hays made a full recovery.

  • He became somewhat of a celebrity in France and people traveled from all over the country

  • to hear his story.

  • The rest of our tales of being buried alive do not have happy endings, so prepare yourself

  • for some gruesome accounts.

  • Anna Hockwalt was in the dressing room getting ready for her brother's wedding when she

  • sat down and didn't get back up.

  • When she was found, her head was leaning against the wall and she appeared to be dead.

  • Medical help arrived at the scene and tried to revive the young woman.

  • But when all attempts to resuscitate her failed, Anna Hockwalt was declared dead.

  • It was assumed that Anna suffered a heart attack due to a preexisting condition of heart

  • palpitations.

  • However, this didn't sit well with her friends who said that her face still seemed to have

  • color and her ears were pink, which may have indicated blood was still passing through

  • them.

  • Anna was buried the following day.

  • At the funeral her friends told Anna's parents what they had noticed.

  • This was enough to convince them to dig up the coffin and examine their daughter's

  • body one last time.

  • To their horror, when the coffin was opened, Anna's body was no longer lying on its back,

  • but instead turned on its side.

  • The skin and muscle on her finger tips had been almost completely torn off.

  • The bone poked out from her fingers as a result of furiously scratching the coffin lid.

  • In frustration Anna had pulled out clumps of her own hair, which now lay next to her

  • lifeless body after being buried alive.

  • We have reached our final story.

  • It is the most terrifying of all.

  • Ovtavia Smith Hatcher was married to a wealthy Kentucky man named James Hatcher.

  • In 1889 she gave birth to her first baby, a son named Jacob.

  • However, Jacob did not survive very long, and died in infancy.

  • When Octavia lost her son, she went into a deep depression.

  • She couldn't get out of bed for several months.

  • Eventually she caught a mysterious illness that began to deteriorate her condition even

  • further.

  • Octavia eventually entered a coma-like state from which no one could rouse her.

  • Only a few months after her son's death, Octavia was declared dead herself.

  • Since it was a hot May day the decision was made to bury the body quickly before it began

  • to decompose and smell.

  • Final preparations were made and Octavia was buried.

  • Then something strange happened.

  • Other people in the town began falling ill with symptoms similar to what Octavia had

  • exhibited.

  • They began to fall into a similar coma-like state with shallow breathing.

  • The difference was that after a few days, most people seemed to get better and recover.

  • To James Hatcher's horror, he thought that maybe his wife just needed more time to recover

  • from the illness, and she was not actually dead.

  • The body of Ovtavia Smith Hatcher was exhumed.

  • When the lid of the coffin was lifted dread filled the onlookers.

  • The lining of the coffin had been shredded; Octavia's fingernails were covered in blood.

  • Her face was twisted into a look of terror, as if she had died while screaming for someone

  • to help her.

  • James Hatcher had his wife's corpse reburied for a second time and erected a lifelike statue

  • of his deceased wife above her grave.

  • Whether every detail of this story is true, or if parts are just an urban legend, is still

  • disputed.

  • But if you talk to community members of Pikeville, Kentucky where Octavia's grave and statue

  • reside they will tell you it all really happened.

  • Now watchWhat To ACTUALLY Do If You Are Buried Alive.”

  • Or check outWalled up Alive - Worst Punishment in the History of Mankind.”

The sound of a jingling bell fills the fridge cemetery air.

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People Who Were Actually Buried Alive

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    Summer posted on 2021/10/05
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