Ila Solomon, a widow from Indiana, lived with her husband’s corpse 9 months after he died. The body of 88-year-old Gerald “Scooter” Gavan was found in their home on May 3. Solomon is still waiting if she will be charged for keeping her husband’s decomposing body.
Solomon gave an interview and a tour of her home to RTV6 on Thursday. The 54-year-old widow showed the news team their living room carpet where her husband died.
When the body was discovered, Solomon insisted that her husband had been dead for only 5 days, but authorities say otherwise. According to Tippecanoe County Coroner Donna Avolt, Gavan had been dead for over 9 months when he was discovered, Indy Star reports.
According to the law, failure to report a dead body within 3 hours of discovery is considered a Class A misdemeanor, and is punishable by up to one year in jail. In Solomon’s case, it is up to the prosecutor to decide if the widow will be charged.
Solomon said that she was just honoring her World War II veteran husband’s request by keeping his decomposing body.
“I just think that somebody who did so much for the United States should have the death he wanted, that’s all. He just wanted to be eaten by the birds to be part of the cycle of life. Plan number two would be for me to take him outside or him to die outside so that the birds could eat him here, but that didn’t happen, instead he died right there.”
According to Gavan’s will, he said that he wanted to a traditional ritual to be followed upon his death wherein his body is to be eaten by vultures in India, Mirror UK reports. After his death, Solomon said that she opened the door to allow the birds inside their home and hope they eat the body of her husband. “All he wanted me to do was just keep his secret and open the door,” she said.
Gavan’s cause of death is still undetermined until now. Solomon has also repaid the government over $20,000, which was disbursed to her husband when he was already deceased.
Solomon said that the government has already taken back 10 months of payments, as they followed the legal report of his husband’s date of death and not the date Solomon reported.
Solomon and Gavan married in 2012. She said that Gavan was a family friend and she grew up knowing him as Uncle Red. In 2000, Gavan asked Solomon to move in with him. “I love Scooter. There’s nothing I wouldn’t do for him,” Solomon said.