Mary Reeser Death The Spontaneous Human Combustion

The mystery of Mary Reeser death is an extraordinary incident that is unacceptable to normal sense. Mary died of the victim of Spontaneous Human Combustion (SHC). SHC is a paranormal phenomenon which people live suddenly burned into a blaze for no apparent reason. Marry Reeser was born in 1881 as an ordinary girl but before her death, something strange began to happen. Marry was found dead in 1951 with the condition of the whole body almost burned completely except for her left leg.

Mystery of Mary Reeser Death Spontaneous Human Combustion
Mary Reeser Death

Police found Mary's remains in a swinging chair when the incident happened. Strangely, her whole body was burned to ashes but her left leg was smooth flawless and even wearing sandals. The police also saw Mary’s skull had shrunk to the size of a baseball by unusual intense heat. This is impossible because the room around her did not burn at all. On the other hand, the estimated temperature of the fire was very high and same as the temperature of a cremation. It should have stroked the whole room not just the woman's body.

From all the SHC cases, Mary’s case was probably the most famous case because her case was the first to get the media's attention. Besides local police and medical examiners, the FBI had been called to do an investigation and modern forensics also took part in the case but they could not solve why it could have happened. The local police never closed the case of Mary's death even though the FBI claimed that her death because she fell asleep while smoking and she burned herself. Mary then was buried in Chestnut Hill Cemetery, outside Mechanicsburg.

Logically, if Mary alone died into ashes so the damage should be more severe happened to the apartment and its buildings but the damage is limited. To burn to ashes, it must burn for three to four hours at a temperature of about 3,000 degrees Fahrenheit. In fact, the mystery of what happened to Mary Reeser at night would never have a satisfying ending. There are many theories that try to explain the cause of this strange incident.

One of them is about SHC theory. It is known as wick effect. When unconscious, the victim's clothes or hair may be burned by cigarettes or other things then trigger wick effect that burns the fat parts. After a few hours, the fat burns and keeps her clothes as a burning wick. This effect is like a candle effect that keeps its wick from burning out quickly. After the parts of fat and wick have burned out then the fire will stop by itself and leave the body burned to ashes. Parts of the body that does not burn are the legs and hands because it has no wick (clothing) to burn.

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