REAL LIFE

Family kept body of mum at home for four days after she died so young daughters could say goodbye

They did her hair and painted her nails.

A family from Maitland, NSW, kept mum’s body at home for four days after she died from breast cancer so her girls could mourn her.

Sam Aulton died in December last year, aged 46, after a battle with breast cancer. It was then that husband Brent Fairns, and the couple’s two girls, Maggie,12, and Ruby, 9, decided to take Sam’s body home.

Talking to Daily Mail Australia the family say it was an important step in the grieving process for them.

‘It really helped the kids because when their mum passed they only spent an hour with her at the hospital, it was all so short and sharp,’ he said.

‘It allowed us to get her out of the hospital gown, put her in her favourite clothes, the kids plaited her hair and did her nails.

‘The mind can play tricks on you so it really helped to bring home the reality she was gone.’ 

Brent says he had no idea until Sam’s death that the law in New South Wales allowed people to take their loved one’s body home for up to 5 days, and shared his story so people would be aware that this was an option for them.

‘I want to help bring some awareness to people out there about the fact this is possible.’

Friends and family admitted to being a bit uncomfortable with the idea of Sam’s body being in the house, however her friend Sally Wilson says she changed her mind in the end.

‘I didn’t want to see her initially, I found it really difficult, but after I did I was so glad,’ she told Daily Mail.

‘I got to tell her how much I loved her and kiss her goodbye. People don’t usually get that opportunity.’

Brent says he has no regrets about his decision to have the family mourn Sam at home.

‘’It was a beautiful process and allowed us all to take the time to grieve.’

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