Swedish man reads his own obituary: ‘Rumours of my death have been greatly exaggerated’

Nadine Kalinauskas
Daily Buzz
Snow lies over head stones at Trinity Church Cemetery during a winter storm in New York January 3, 2014. A major snowstorm producing blizzard-like conditions hammered the northeastern United States on Friday, causing more than 1,000 U.S. flight delays and cancellations, paralyzing road travel, and closing schools and government offices. REUTERS/Zoran Milich (UNITED STATES - Tags: SOCIETY ENVIRONMENT)

Sven-Olof Svensson, 81, from Jönköping in Sweden, was reading the local Jönköpings-Posten newspaper on New Year's Eve when he came across something startling: his own obituary.

Even stranger: it had been written by his 90-year-old sister, as well as his good friend Lars Faltskog.

According to the Metro, Svensson had been admitted to the hospital on Christmas Eve for feeling "unwell."

When his sister called the hospital, she misunderstood his doctors and assumed he'd already died.

On January 3, three days after the obituary had been published, Faltskog arrived at the hospital to collect Svensson's personal belongings. Svensson was still there — sitting up and very much alive — to greet him.

Fortunately, Svensson could laugh off the mix-up:

"Rumours of my death have been greatly exaggerated," he said, paraphrasing Mark Twain.

A reporter from the newspaper came to visit him shortly after for a "follow-up" article.

"You can see the humour in it. It's understandable to me that there may have been a mistake, even if it was fatal, in this case," Svensson told the Jönköpings-Posten. "According to my sister, she rang up the doctors and talked about me and, as she understood it, I had died. It's clear that she was shocked."

When asked how he felt about reading his own obituary, he said "you don't feel much."

"We are all on the same road. Sooner or later you are going to end up in the obituary section. I’ve lived a fantastic long life, I’m 81 and can’t complain about my age."