A South London woman discovered two years after her death had her funeral attended by only two people. On April 19, two mourners attended Sheila Seleoane’s funeral service at Croydon Crematorium.
According to the Mail, her brother Victor, a convicted murderer with whom she had no contact, and a representative of Peabody, her housing landlord, sat and listened to the eulogy read by a pastor.
Residents in the Peckham block where she lived say they were unaware of her funeral and were “disgusted” that Peabody had failed to inform them.
According to the Daily Mail, the housing provider claims her brother preferred a private ceremony.
After being tracked down in South Africa, the 61-year-sister old’s Julia Bella Brooms, whom she had never met, was informed of her death.
She then decided to have a traditional Methodist funeral and be buried in her family plot.
Peabody flew her remains to South Africa for the funeral service, which was attended by about 100 mourners.
Her distant sister now wants answers but cannot afford to travel to the UK for the inquest, which will take place on July 21 at Southwark Coroner’s Court.
When Sheila was discovered, her sister wondered why no one had known she had died for two years.
Speaking to the Mail she said: “Where were Sheila’s neighbours? Where were her work colleagues? People from the local municipality? Her landlord? This could never happen in South Africa.
“Here, when your neighbour isn’t seen, even for one or two days, you go to check up on them. We live as a community. This is too much. Awful. I don’t understand how anyone could pass away and be left for so long.”
Residents in Sheila’s corridor complained to housing association Peabody Trust in 2019 after smelling an odor coming from her home.
The odor faded but reappeared, prompting neighbors to contact housing association Peabody, who reportedly opened the hallway window and “that was it.” The 61-year-old remained neglected and alone in her home until police arrived on February 18, 2022.
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