Airline Delivers Dead Body to Pet Store

By Karen Araiza and Vince Lattanzio
|  Wednesday, Mar 11, 2009  |  Updated 7:57 AM EDT
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Here's the box with the body in the back of an SUV. Workers at the Pets Plus USA on Roosevelt Blvd. thought they'd picked up some exotic fish from California.

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Pet Store Picks Up Human Body Instead of Fish

A local pet store picked up a box from Philly International airport Tuesday morning. It was supposed be their order of fresh, tropical fish. It was a man's body that had been donated to science.

Pet Store Owner Talks About Finding Body in Box

The pet store owner talks about finding a box with a human body inside instead of his tropical fish.
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Talk about your snafu.

Workers at a pet store in Northeast Philly spent half the day Tuesday freakin' out.

They went to pick up a big box of fish at the airport today.

They came back with a big box.
Eight feet long.
It had a body inside.

We got this frantic email at 12:36 p.m.:
"Please contact me ASAP about a dead body mistakenly picked up at the airport a few minutes ago by a local pet store.  Was supposed to pick up fish and we received a dead human body! Is in the store RIGHT NOW!"

A packing slip on the box said "human remains" and had an address for a funeral home. No one wanted to open the box and in the end, no one had to. The pet store owner figured out what happened with police help and a few phone calls.

Turns out the body is a man from San Diego who died last week and donated his body to science. It was supposed to go to a research company in the Lehigh Valley.

But there was a mix up at the airport. US Airways, infamous for it's baggage handling problems will now have this to live down.

"The mix up occurred due to a verbal miscommunication between a delivery driver and the cargo representative.  We are working to rectify the situation and are deeply sorry for the inconvenience this has caused," is the official statement from US Airways.

Yeah, I know. You're wondering what happened to the fish?

"They're still at the airport. Most likely dead," said pet store owner Mark Arabia.

And here's the ultimate irony: Jon Kenoyer, the man whose body ended up at the pet store, was a mailman. He hated to fly but as a practical joker, he loved a good laugh. His wife Mary says that's probably what he's having a laugh right about now.

Kenoyer also said she hopes this incident doesn't discourage others from donating their bodies to science.

In the end, the Pets Plus workers made arrangements with Philly PD to have a man's body picked up by airport officials.

Hopefully, his body gets to where it belongs.

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