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'Dead' Mississippi man who kicked out of body bag has died

By Therese Apel

JACKSON, Mississippi (Reuters) - A Mississippi man pronounced dead last month and put in a body bag only to come alive just before embalming, has now died, a coroner said on Thursday.

Walter Williams, 78, died at about 1 a.m. local time in Lexington, two weeks after shocking people when he started breathing and kicking at a funeral home where he was taken after being declared dead, said Holmes County Coroner Dexter Howard.

"I think he's gone this time," Williams' nephew, Eddie Hester, told a local television station.

Williams had been receiving hospice care at home for end-stage cardiovascular disease and other ailments before his near-death experience on February 27. The coroner mistakenly declared him dead after neither he nor nurses could find a pulse.

Hospital officials said Williams appeared to have been suffering from severe hypoglycemia, or low blood sugar. That condition, combined with his medications, would have made it difficult to find a pulse and may have put him in such a deep sleep that it appeared he had died.

Williams, known by the nicknames "Snowball" or "Snow" because he was born during a rare Mississippi blizzard, took the experience in stride and told his family to let him go when his time came for good.

"He told us, 'It's all up in the Lord's hands. Whatever the Lord says, I'm willing to do. Y'all just accept it,'" his daughter Gracie Williams said.

(Editing by Colleen Jenkins and Gunna Dickson)

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