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'Dead Willi' on UK flight makes it back to Berlin

AFP · 1 Sep 2010, 11:57

Published: 01 Sep 2010 11:57 GMT+02:00

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Gitta Jarant and her daughter Anke Anusic denied knowing that Kurt Willi Jarant, 91, had breathed his last when the trio arrived to check in for a flight to Berlin from Liverpool in northwest England.

Now though, almost five months later, Willi has been cremated and his ashes have arrived in Berlin, where they will have pride of place on his widow's mantelpiece while they await burial, the Bild daily reported.

"Willi would be happy to know that he is back in Berlin. This was always his home," the paper quoted Anusic as saying.

Staff at John Lennon Airport had helped the elderly man, who was reportedly wearing sunglasses, out of a taxi into his wheelchair but officials became suspicious, taking his pulse and discovering he had passed away.

"My Willi died at the airport. He suddenly looked so limp, like a wax figure. And his fingernails suddenly turned blue," the widow said at the time. "He was still warm when we were at home, I swear it."

British police were not so sure however, suspecting that the pair wanted to save on the high cost of repatriating the corpse of the former pilot.

Story continues below…

The two were released on bail and will reportedly learn later this month whether they will have to face trial in England, Bild said.

The paper added that ashes were brought back by the old man's widow, Anusic and her sister Peggy.

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Your comments about this article

12:50 September 1, 2010 by Prufrock2010
Lucky for Willi that he wasn't on British Airways. They would have lost him.
12:56 September 1, 2010 by blingie
I reckon at 91, the willy was dead a long time ago...
13:56 September 1, 2010 by beeker
Back in the day when the EU had border controls there was the urban myth about vacationers sneaking a dead granpa through customs by arranging him in the back seat like he was asleep.
21:53 September 1, 2010 by TheEye
How come they didn't spot him on queasyJet?

He must have stood out as the only passenger who wasn't complaining about poor legroom, expensive extras and dreadful service.
15:21 September 3, 2010 by Gottsch Family
OMG !!!!!

If this was a US flight, they would have made her pay a check in baggage fee.
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