When you die, donate your body to science. To be mummified! After being diagnosed with terminal lung cancer, Alan Billis, a father of three from England, responded to an advertisement seeking a volunteer to be mummified.
“People have been leaving their bodies to science for years,” he said of his decision, “and if people don’t volunteer for anything nothing gets found out.”
When Billis died in January of 2011, Dr. Stephen Buckley and Dr. Jo Fletcher, both archaeology fellows from the University of York, collected his body, intending to preserve it by using the same techniques last practiced by the ancient Egyptians more than 3,000 years ago.
According to the BBC, the mummification techniques used on Billis relied heavily on beeswax, oils, and resins, in addition to long amounts of time in natron, a particularly caustic salt thought to be used by the ancient Egyptians.
The full results of Alan’s mummification will be televised on “I Was Mummified,” a Discovery Channel show set to air on Sunday, Oct. 21.
As for Alan, if the researchers performed their jobs correctly, his body may be around for several thousand years.