PORTLAND, OR- A man who had donated his body to science instead had it desecrated at what has been described as a “freak show” event in Oregon, and now his family is understandably outraged by the situation.
“Event organizers sold tickets for up to $500 to the public to view in-person the autopsy and dissection of a human body. The event is part of the “Oddities and Curiosities Expo” which travels across the country,” KING 5 said.
Once it was discovered what the Expo had done, a similar event that had been planned in Portland for Halloween was canceled after local news reports reported on the story.
“It makes me really feel saddened that this gentleman was not given the dignity and the respect that he deserved and what he thought and his family thought that would be happening to his body,” said Mike Clark, a Baton Rouge, Louisiana funeral director to the station of the man, David Saunders, a veteran of World War II.
According to Clark, he had gotten Saunders’ body ready prior to it being handed of to Med Ed Labs, a company based in Las Vegas that solicits donations of cadavers for medical and scientific research, understanding that it should be prepared in an appropriate manner.
That was hardly done, as Saunders’ body ended up on display at a Portland Marriott hotel ballroom “as the centerpiece of an autopsy and dissection before a live, paying audience.”
“I was horrified,” said Clark. “Our whole staff was horrified that this is what had happened to a gentleman that he and his family thought that his body was going for the advancement of medical students.”
Meanwhile, the organizer of the event was unapologetic, claiming the dissection was “medical research.”
“I can guarantee that that man knew his body would be used for medical research,” said Jeremy Ciliberto, founder of DeathScience.org and the organizer of the event.
Saunders died from COVID-19. It’s unknown why a COVID-positive body was supplied to Ciliberto.
The chief medical death investigator with the Multnomah County Medical Examiner’s office, Kimberly DiLeo called the situation disrespectful to the deceased and his family.
“We feel that this was not respectful and certainly not ethical,” she said.
The event had the body on a table in the center of a ballroom, with a white sheet draped over him. VIP customers who paid $500 sat in the front row only inches from the table, KING-5 said.
Dr. Colin Henderson, a retired professor of anatomy at the University of Montana in Missoula removed the sheet and exposed the body of the man, whom Henderson said “had donated his body to science.”
Over the next several hours, Henderson conducted what amounted to an autopsy of the dead veteran, cutting into the chest cavity, head, and limbs of the man. During the event he removed various organs and the brain, and explained to the audience this was a similar procedure to that which he had taught students during his college professor days.
“It was very educational,” said a woman named Monica. “It was very respectful to the person that donated their body.”
Another woman named Christine said, “They’re not doing anything that I would, if it was my own family member, be upset about.”
Ciliberto called the expo “an educational event” that “allows the students to explore the body in a much more intimate way,” while removing the stigma from death.
“This is not a sideshow,” he said. “This is very professional.”
Med Ed was paid “north” of $10,000 for the body, although Ciliberto wouldn’t specify the amount. He said MedEd was aware of what he planned to do with the body, and allegedly obtained proper consent. However according to DiLeo, that was not necessarily true.
“Their supervisor was unaware of the deceased being used for this event,” DiLeo said.
Ciliberto told KING 5 in an email that notification of the deceased’s family wasn’t his responsibility.
“Any concerns about the cadaver have always been addressed by the lab,” Ciliberto wrote. “Again I am not the lab, I am the host.”
When DiLeo found out about the show scheduled for Oct. 17, she contacted the Downtown Courtyard Marriott and convinced them to cancel the cadaver expo.
“(The Marriott was) initially told that the event was for medical equipment training and once they found out and discovered the website, (the manager) immediately canceled the event,” said DiLeo.
However undeterred, Ciliberto moved the event to the nearby Marriott Downtown Waterfront in Portland and the management of that hotel refused to cancel the event.
“We follow detailed protocols to protect safety,” the general manager of Marriott Downtown, Martin McAllister said in a written statement. “We are aware of concerns regarding a recent event and we are looking into them further, but as a matter of privacy, we do not discuss details of guests or groups.”
For DiLeo, she said there needs to be a law in place to prevent events like this from happening in the future.
For Ciliberto he’s unmoved by the controversy.
“We’re looking at more locations across the United States in 2022,” he said.
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Since we’re in Portland, home of Antifa, here is a story about that group of anarchist radicals destroying monuments to World War II and others.
WASHINGTON D.C. – The National World War II Memorial. The National Law Enforcement Memorial. Both tributes to the fallen… both reportedly defaced by Antifa this weekend.
In the wake of last night's demonstrations, there are numerous instances of vandalism to sites around the National Mall. For generations the Mall has been our nation’s premier civic gathering space for non-violent demonstrations, and we ask individuals to carry on that tradition. pic.twitter.com/LmIHfW2AHj
— National Mall NPS (@NationalMallNPS) May 31, 2020
Not just in Washington D.C., but all across the country, rioters targeted landmarks that paid tribute to the fallen.
On the outside of the National World War II Memorial’s central fountain, vandals asked whether black veterans count. Apparently they don’t count enough for the vandals to respect their memory.
— Jon Nicosia (@NewsPolitics) May 31, 2020
The Friends of the National World War II Memorial hit back on Twitter, pointing out that the memorial honors and remembers the one million black veterans who served.
With all the news we get, how have we missed these images? How can you do this at the Lincoln Memorial? How can you do this at the WWII Memorial? pic.twitter.com/nY6Z16tjz8
— suzanne sigona (@suzanne_sigona) June 1, 2020
The National Park Service said several memorials across Washington, D.C. were vandalized, including the Lincoln Memorial.
That’s where someone spray painted “Y’all not tired yet?”
“In the wake of last night’s demonstrations, there are numerous instances of vandalism to sites around the National Mall,” the National Park Service for the National Mall said in a tweet with photos of defaced monuments.
“For generations the Mall has been our nation’s premier civic gathering space for non-violent demonstrations, and we ask individuals to carry on that tradition.”
The National Law Enforcement Memorial in Washington DC has been Vandalized pic.twitter.com/aFQa8WwDqz
— Rob O'Donnell (@odonnell_r) May 31, 2020
It’s not just war memorials.
From D.C. to Sacramento and between, the attacks on tributes to the fallen continued.
Multiple statues and structures were vandalized today in Sacramento during the protests, including the California Peace Officers' Memorial monument. It was created back in 1988 to honor the men and women of law enforcement who lost their lives in the line of duty. @fox40 pic.twitter.com/iPwZlPRmtE
— Bridgette Bjorlo (@bridgettebjorlo) May 31, 2020
In one case of vandalism, the thugs couldn’t even spell the word they were trying to spray paint.
Someone spray painted “Deciet” on the Law Enforcement Officers Memorial in the North Shore pic.twitter.com/4cBUML5fvH
— Mick Stinelli (@MickStinelli) May 28, 2020
With messages from “murderers” to “fuck the police”, the vandals – reportedly Antifa members or supporters – all seem to have evaded capture.
This is the law enforcement memorial in Sacramento CA! Thugs did this! pic.twitter.com/CDJGqPo7JA
— Don Schwartzer (@Cmdr10HenryRet) May 31, 2020
We spoke with a United States Marine combat veteran who was livid. “Joe” currently does contract work with law enforcement, and so he’s asked us to keep his identity confidential.
But he put it best.
“Hey Antifa – you’ve disrespected my brothers and sisters who died in combat. You’ve spit on the graves of my brothers who died on duty. It’s time to step up and meet me nose to nose in the street. Then we’ll see how tough you are.”
Speaking of disrespecting those who serve… tonight, we’ve received disturbing footage out of Austin.
It shows a group of Antifa militants taunting the homeless under an overpass, then lighting a homeless man’s mattress on fire.
Law Enforcement Today spoke with an Austin police officer on the condition of anonymity. He said the homeless man is known in the area and believed to be a combat veteran who has battled PTSD for years.
Apparently Austin police are reviewing the footage and trying to identify the suspects.
In the video, the homeless man rushes to recover his mattress from the fire while shouting, “I live here!”
“What are you doing?!” he cried. “I live here! What are you doing! What the fuck are you doing?!”
On Saturday, President Trump declared that he’ll be designating Antifa as a terror organization. And things are heating up quickly.
The Minnesota National Guard has been armed and is on high alert.
This is after the FBI reportedly warned of a ‘credible, lethal threat’.
Minnestota National Guard’s top general said his soldiers are armed after receiving FBI warning about “credible, lethal threat” against his forces
— Lucas Tomlinson (@LucasFoxNews) May 31, 2020
The National Guard’s top general requested military police units from out of state as a result of the threat. He has not requested active-duty forces yet.
Minnesota National Guard’s top general says he has requested military police units from other states, but has not requested active-duty forces yet
— Lucas Tomlinson (@LucasFoxNews) May 31, 2020
These threats reportedly came after officials worked to determine if extremist groups had infiltrated police brutality protests across the country.
Law enforcement is looking into if they deliberately tipped largely peaceful demonstrations toward violence.
Just in: Adjutant General of the Minnesota National Guard Maj. Gen. Jon Jensen says his soldiers are armed & "carrying ammunition" in their magazine pouches based on "a credible lethal threat" to Minn NG conveyed by the FBI on Thursday. Can be upgraded based on local conditions.
— Jack Detsch (@JackDetsch) May 31, 2020
To make matters worse, they’re investigating if foreign adversaries – such as Russia – were behind a growing disinformation campaign on social media.
On Saturday, an Antifa activist group put out a message that encouraged people to consider Minnesota National Guard troops “easy targets,” according to two Defense Department officials.
— John D (@thinkthinkthin6) May 31, 2020
The activists were encouraged to steal “kit”, or the weapons and body armor used by the soldiers.
The officials were not authorized to discuss the matter publicly and spoke on condition of anonymity, reports one outlet.
Now, soldiers with the Minnesota National Guard have been armed during all missions at protests across the state.
The soldiers are sometimes – but not always – armed. Yet for the past few days, they haven’t been armed as they’ve moved into parts of the state taken over by riots.
In the state, the troops do not currently have the authority to make arrests, and are there to act essentially as extra security for police.
There are currently more than 4,100 National Guard soldiers and airmen in Minneapolis.
Hours after President Trump declared that he’ll be designating Antifa as a terror organization, they reportedly made the ultimate threat – we’re bringing the war to the suburbs.
Now authorities are on high alert.
Editor note: In 2020, we saw a nationwide push to “defund the police”. While we all stood here shaking our heads wondering if these people were serious… they cut billions of dollars in funding for police officers. And as a result, crime has skyrocketed – all while the same politicians who said “you don’t need guns, the government will protect you” continued their attacks on both our police officers and our Second Amendment rights.
And that’s exactly why we’re launching this national crowdfunding campaign as part of our efforts to help “re-fund the police”.
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