PRESERVATION

How Mzee Moi's body was preserved at Lee Funeral Home

After body is rewashed and dried, moisturizing cream is applied to the face, hands.

In Summary

• His body did not decompose rather it was preserved, making him stay in good shape and order without any foul smell.

The casket carrying Mzee Moi./ANDREW KASUKU
The casket carrying Mzee Moi./ANDREW KASUKU

Former President Daniel Moi died on February 4, 2020, and he lay-in-state for three days at Parliament to allow Kenyans to view his body.

Kenyans went to view his body daily from Saturday to Monday.

Mzee Moi's body wore different suits for each of the three days the public was allowed to view it.

 

His body did not decompose rather it was preserved, making him stay in good shape and order without any foul smell.

But how exactly did this happen?

After his death, Moi was taken to the Lee Funeral Home for body preservation.

What Happens to the Body After Death?

The body is removed from the place of death and brought to the funeral home.

In this case, Moi was removed from Nairobi Hospital to the Lee Funeral Home.

Before anything is done, the funeral home staff will obtain your permission and should explain what exactly will be done.

According to the Lee Funeral website, the first step, regardless of what type of disposition that, you choose, is bathing and disinfecting the body.

 

This is done not only for the safety of the funeral home staff, family and friends but also for the dignity and respect of the deceased.

"A human body starts to change immediately after death occurs and bathing and disinfecting are necessary," it said.

Clothing, Jewellery

After disposition has been chosen and the preparation has been completed, you will need to consider clothing and other mementoes such as jewellery and any other accessories.

Options will vary depending on your previous choices.

Some religious beliefs will dictate simple garments or particular outfits or you may be able to choose any style of clothing.

Preparing body for viewing

The final step is preparing the body for private or public viewing.

According to the parlour, cosmetics are applied and the hair is styled according to the family wishes.

The embalmers do embalming to temporarily preserve the body.

Wikipedia notes that this process makes it easier to transport the body over a long distance.

Moi's body was transported to Parliament to Lee for the three days.

It was also transported to Nyayo and finally Kabarak where his body will be interred.

This process has allowed made it easier for the body to be viewed in an open casket.

In addition to preservation, embalming helps guard against health hazards.

Good grooming

After the body is rewashed and dried, a moisturising cream is applied to the face, hands and arms.

Ideally the deceased will usually sit for as long as possible for observation by the embalmer.

Cosmetics are commonly, but not universally, applied to make the body appear more lifelike and to create a "memory picture" for the deceased's friends and relatives.

Makeup is applied to the lips to mimic their natural colour.

Sometimes a very pale or light pink lipstick is applied on males, while brighter coloured lipstick is applied to females.

Hair gel or baby oil is applied to style short hair; while hairspray is applied to style long hair.

Powders (especially baby powder) are applied to the body to eliminate odours, and it is also applied to the face to achieve a matte and fresh effect to prevent oiliness of the corpse.

Chemicals used

Embalming chemicals are a variety of preservatives, sanitizers, disinfectant agents, and additives used in modern embalming to temporarily delay decomposition and restore a natural appearance for viewing a body after death.

A mixture of these chemicals is known as embalming fluid and is used to preserve deceased individuals, sometimes only until the funeral, other times indefinitely.

Typical embalming fluid contains a mixture of formaldehyde, glutaraldehyde, methanol, humectants and wetting agents, and other solvents that can be used. The formaldehyde content generally ranges from 5-35%, and the ethanol content may range from 9-56%.


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