Dead Ringers

So that kid from "The Sixth Sense" thinks he sees dead people?


He's got nothing on Jean Stevens.

Stevens is a 91-year-old widow from Wyalusing, Pennsylvania with skeletons in her closet---and corpses on her furniture.

No typo there. No misprint, no hyperbole.

I'll say it again: Corpses. On. Her. Furniture.

Jean Stevens, holding a 1940s photo of her and husband James

Stevens is a sweet old lady who just couldn't bear the idea of her husband and twin sister dying. So when they actually did, Stevens took denial to a whole new level.

The lady had the bodies of her husband, James---who died in 1999---and her twin sister June, who passed away last October, exhumed.

Not only that, she propped them up on different sofas in her home---June in a spare room off the bedroom, James on a couch in the detached garage.

"Death is very hard for me to take," Stevens told the Associated Press in an utterance that is my nomination for Understatement of the Year, 2010.

Well, sweet old Jean got caught; the cops got a tip, and the bodies were removed from her home and turned over to the Bradford County coroner.

June was dressed in her finest housecoat, and Jean would spray her often with expensive perfume. Jean would talk to her dead twin, and sometimes forget that she was talking to a corpse.

"I put her glasses on," Stevens said. "When I did that, it made all the difference in the world. I'd fix her face up all the time."

You've heard of home schooling? Jean Stevens was practicing her some home morticianing.

As for her late husband's body, Stevens explained her bizarre behavior thusly.

"I could see him, I could look at him, I could touch him. Now, some people have a terrible feeling; they say, 'Why do you want to look at a dead person?'

"Well, I felt differently about death."

Oop---there's my second nomination of understatement!

Stevens managed to escape detection for over 10 years. She suspects that a relative of her late husband's blew the whistle.

Stevens's case is so odd and without much recent precedent that authorities are at a quandary as to what to do with her. She IS 91, after all.

A decision on charges is expected in a few weeks.

If this falls in the "I gotta see this for myself" category, click here to read the full story of Jean Stevens and her lifeless companions.


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