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Woman kills herself on live stream. Her ashes are then stolen to be sold for a "ghost marriage"

Woman kills herself on live stream. Her ashes are then stolen to be sold for a "ghost marriage"

The crematorium staff workers stole the ashes and could have fetched between $7,800 to $11,000 if they managed to get a family to buy it.

Trigger warning: The story contains details of suicide that might be distressing to some readers.

The ashes of a deceased fashion blogger, who went by the name of Luoxiaomaomaozi, were almost sold to a family for a "ghost wedding" just weeks after she ended her own life. 

Luoxiaomaomaozi was known for her online presence on the app called Douyin, which is China's version of TikTok. In the very last post that Luoxiaomaomaozi put up on her account, she was seen live-streaming her final moments before drinking pesticide and taking her life.

"This is probably my last video as I have been suffering from depression for a long time," she said in the video posted on October 14, according to Global Times.

The young woman told her audience that she spent over two months in the hospital and had been diagnosed with depression. When she began drinking the pesticide, some viewers reportedly egged her on by saying "drink it quickly." Others warned her and asked for the police to be called.



 

The blogger was eventually taken to the hospital and pronounced dead. What followed was an unusual turn of events that led to the online celebrity's ashes nearly being sold off to another family.

After Luoxiaomaomaozi's body was cremated in the Shandong province, staff members at the crematorium reportedly stole her ashes as part of a plot to carry out a ghost marriage. A ghost marriage is an illegal and superstitious practice that involves burying the ashes of a dead woman with the remains of a dead man so that the deceased are not lonely or unhappy in the afterlife.

Using Luoxiaomaomaozi's stolen ashes, the staff members at the crematorium tried to broker a deal with a family for their deceased son. Selling the ashes could have fetched them any amount between $7,800 to $11,000 (50,000 to 70,000 Chinese yuan), a source told Beijing News, according to VICE.

It was reported that one worker, surnamed Shao, had switched Luoxiaomaomaozi's ashes at the funeral home. Another worker, with the surname Lei, drove to the funeral facility to take the ashes while another co-worker, surnamed Zhang, contacted a potential buyer to sell the ashes of the online celebrity, who died by suicide.



 

Zhang later claimed the family did not want their deceased son to "marry" Luoxiaomaomaozi's ashes, as reported by South China Morning Post.

The staff members were eventually caught, and the stolen ashes of the young woman were returned back to her family.

Following the incident, many spoke up against the practice of "ghost weddings," which is banned in China but still practiced in some parts. Earlier this year, it was reported that a man was sentenced to death for killing two mentally-disabled women before putting their bodies up for sale to be brides in "ghost weddings."

Among those who condemned the practice after Luoxiaomaomaozi's death, one internet user said, as quoted by VICE, "If anyone talks again about women not being able to get married at an older age, I’ll tell them women would get wedded in ghost marriages even after they die."

If you or someone you know shows signs of suicidal thoughts, please reach out to 1-800-273-8255 (NCPL) or suicidepreventionlifeline.org.

Cover image: Representational (Source: Getty Images | Photo by Jeffrey Coolidge)

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