A man in Indonesia was killed when his mother's coffin fell and crushed him.
Samen Kondorura, 40, died on Friday, June 15, when pallbearers carrying his mother's casket up a babmboo ladder in the Parinding valley in North Toraja district lost their footing and fell, according to The Guardian.
Video of the incident, which was posted to YouTube, shows pallbearers carrying the casket to an elaborately carved stilt tower known as a lakkian when the bamboo ladder suddenly shifts just as they reach the top, sending the pallbearers falling to the ground below. Kondorura, who had been near the rear of the coffin, was crushed by it after it fell more than 10 feet and was left hanging vertical.
"As the mother's coffin was being raised to the lakkian, suddenly the ladder shifted and collapsed, the coffin fell and hit the victim," Julianto Sirait, chief police commissioner of the Tana Toraja municipality on Sulawesi, said.
Onlookers in the video can be heard screaming as dozens of others attempt rush towards the scene to pull Kondorura from the pile of rubble. They eventually managed to free him and he was rushed to a hospital, where he later died.
According to Sirait, the accident occurred due to a faulty ladder that had not been properly reinforced, resulting in the ladder shifting as the pallbearers reached the top of the lakkian.
National Geographic reports that Torajan funerals are elaborate celebrations for life that can last for several days and include dancing, singing, and feasts. In some instances, animals, such as water buffalos, are sacrificed. In many instances, the body will be tended to by loved ones for days, weeks, or even years.
"For Torajans, the death of the body isn't the abrupt, final, severing event of the West. Instead, death is just one step in a long, gradually unfolding process. Late loved ones are tended at home for weeks, months, or even years after death. Funerals are often delayed as long as necessary to gather far-flung relatives. The grandest funeral ceremonies are week-long events drawing Torajans home in a vast reverse diaspora from wherever in the world they may be," National Geographic writes.
The publication added that tongkonan, "distinctive stilted structures" that serve as ancestral homes, "carpet the region, their giant curved roofs seeming to float like huge red boats on seas of palm, coffee trees, and bougainvillea."
Kondorura's family has decided not to press charges against those who built the structure.
Kondorura's body is now resting beside his mother, Berta Kondorura.0comments