74-year-old Nebraska woman declared dead found to be breathing at funeral home

A 74-year-old woman pronounced dead at a Nebraska nursing home was found to be alive and breathing when she arrived at the local funeral parlor, police said.

Constance Glantz had been receiving end-of-life care at The Mulberry home in Waverly when she was pronounced dead on Monday at around 9:44 a.m. local time, CNN reported. She was subsequently transported to the Butherus-Maser & Love Funeral Home in Lincoln, about 15 miles away, but when an employee at the facility moved to prepare her body, they noticed something strange.

Nearly two hours after the nursing home staff’s death declaration, Glantz appeared to be breathing.

“They instantly called 911,” Chief Deputy Ben Houchin said.

Glantz was, in turn, taken to a nearby hospital, where she remained alive for another couple of hours.

“This is a very unusual case,” Houchin told reporters at a press conference. “Been doing this 31 years, and nothing like this has ever gotten to this point before.”

Glantz was pronounced dead for the second time around 4 p.m., KOLN reported. She was slated to undergo an autopsy Tuesday morning.

Houchin explained that given her condition, her death had been “anticipated.” Because there was nothing to suggest foul play, the nursing home did not have to contact the coroner or cops in wake of her death, he added.

“A physician had seen her in the last seven days, and the physician is willing to sign the death certificate, and that there was nothing suspicious at that time of the death — all of those fit,” the chief deputy said.

Houchin noted an investigation into the incident was underway but that so far there are no indications that the nursing home acted with malice in declaring Glantz dead.

“At this point, we have not been able to find any criminal intent by the nursing home, but the investigation is ongoing,” he said.