Here's some good advice for anyone considering faking their death:
Skip the memorial service.
Alison Matera of New Port Richey, Fla., should have done just that last Friday, but instead her ruse was exposed when she sat among mourners, listening to friends and family celebrate her life.
It all started, the St. Petersburg Times reported Friday, when the 27-year-old told members of her church choir that she was dying of cancer, and that she soon would start receiving treatments.
Matera then started giving her friends regular updates during her "treatments."
Then, near the end of last year, she told them she was giving up her fight and entering a hospice so she could die, the newspaper reported.
She "left" the church, but choir members said they continued to receive calls from a "hospice nurse" with updates on Matera's health. The same "nurse" then called choir director Timothy Paquin on Jan. 18 to say Matera had died. Paquin said he then received a call from someone identifying themselves as Matera's sister, detailing the family's arrangements for the body.
The strange thing, according to a report filed with the Pasco County Sheriff's Office, is that all the choir members said the callers all sounded exactly like Matera.
Paquin said he called the hospice and local funeral homes, but none had ever heard of Matera.
Then, when the church family gathered to mourn Matera's death, a woman looking exactly like Matera showed up, claiming to be her sister, they said.
Choir members called the sheriff's office for help, and when deputies went to Matera's apartment she confessed the hoax, saying she needed to separate from the church community.