A family gathering to mourn the death of a relative were shocked to tears and fainting when the deceased man in question pitched up at his own funeral on Tuesday.
In a bizarre case of mistaken identity, news of car washer Gilberto Araujo’s murder had been relayed to the family by local police in Sao Paulo, Brazil on Sunday.
Shortly after, when the wayward vagabond’s brother was called into the morgue to make a positive identification on the body, he saw his brother lying on the table and took the corpse home so his family could hold a wake.
Family and friends of Gilberto Araujo (right) had spent the night grieving beside his open coffin. But the body they were weeping over was that of a workmate (left) who relatives say looked uncannily like 41-year-old Gilberto
Jose Marcos Araujo was so fooled by the likeness of fellow car washer Genivaldo Santos Gama to his brother Gilberto, that he mistakenly confirmed the body to be his sibling’s.
Police inspector Roberto Lima said that Jose Marcos took the body to his mother’s Alagoinhas home where a wake was held on Tuesday.
Mother’s love: Gilberto Araujo’s mother, Marina Santana, was shocked and overjoyed to see her son after a friend told the man that his family thought he was dead and he should go and let them know he was okay
Lima said the confusion was ‘understandable.’
‘The two men closely resembled each other and both worked as car washers,’ Lima said adding that no further information on Gama was immediately available.
According to Gawker, the family had not seen or heard from Mr Araujo in the four months before the vexing case of mistaken identity.
A few hours before the Monday burial ‘a friend of Gilberto’s saw him walking down the street and told him that his family was mourning him,’ he said.
‘So he went to his mother’s home to let everyone know he was very much alive.’
When Araujo showed up at his wake ‘some people fainted and others were so scared they ran away. It was a big shock,’ family friend Maria Menezes told the G1 online news site.
Gilberto’s mother Marina Santana told reporters: ‘I am overjoyed. What mother wouldn’t be after being told that her son is dead and then sees him alive.’