Wills, Trusts & Estates Prof Blog

Editor: Gerry W. Beyer
Texas Tech Univ. School of Law

Wednesday, July 31, 2019

Arizona Man Says his Mother's Body was Blown up in a Military Detonation Test Without his Consent

ToetagJim Stauffer was at loss after his mother, Doris, died of Alzheimer's at the age of 73 back in 2014 and the neurologist rejected her body for research. He sought out other biological donation facilities with the hopes his mother’s body could be used to further research into what causes memory loss in Alzheimer's patients. He contacted Biological Resource Center (BRC) which arrived 45 minutes after his mother's death. The company has since been shut down after being raided by the Federal Bureau of Investigation in 2014 for allegedly selling body parts for profit.

Jim said he signed paperwork that specified what was and what was not to happen to his mother's body. "Performing these medical tests that may involve explosions, and we said no. We checked the 'no' box on all that." He later received a box that contained supposedly the majority of her ashes. Five years later, he learned that BRC had sold his mother's body to military and it had been tied to a chair and a bomb was detonated underneath it to simulate what happens to the human body when a vehicle hits an IED.

A spokesperson from the Pentagon stated that BRC provided body parts to U.S. Army contractors under false pretenses, claiming they had the consent of the families. Jim has now joined a civil lawsuit against BRC and its owner, Stephen Gore, alleging that the company preyed on low-income and grieving families. Gore pleaded guilty in 2015 to defrauding customers by selling contaminated body parts to paying medical institutions.

See Danielle Wallace, Arizona Man Says his Mother's Body was Blown up in a Military Detonation Test Without his Consent, Fox News, July 31, 2019.


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