18 Human Heads Found at Chicago Airport

News

/ January 15, 2013

This is not a made up story, people.

Workers at O’Hare International Airport in Chicago recently discovered a shipment of 18 frozen human heads. The freaky package was seized by customs officials during a routine X-ray screening of arriving cargo

However, after a brief investigation authorities realized the heads were being used for medical research in Italy and were returning for cremation in Illinois.

“Just last week, we transported eight heads, unembalmed, to Rush University Medical Center for an ophthalmology program,” said Paul Dudek, director of the Anatomical Gift Association of Illinois, which supplies cadavers and body parts to medical schools in the state for training students.

The AP Reports:

His association sends about 450 whole cadavers to medical schools each year and also ships individual body parts, including about a dozen shipments of heads annually.

The heads are used for training in fields such as dentistry, ophthalmology and neurology, where they are used for Alzheimer’s research. They are also used to train plastic surgeons and by students learning to perform facial reconstructions on accident and trauma victims, Dudek said.

Most cadavers are obtained through voluntary donation by people who designate a willingness to have their bodies benefit science upon their death, Dudek said. A much smaller proportion are the bodies of people whose families could not afford their burial and so agree to allow the state to release them for research.

Read more at the AP