Elderly German Woman’s Body Found in Vent of Cruise Ship

January 5, 2017 Updated: January 5, 2017

The body of an elderly woman was found in a vent on a cruise ship—about four months after she was reported missing.

Imelda Bechstein, 74, spent a week in Italy on the cruise ship “Sharden” in October 2016 along with her husband Ernst Bechstein. He went to sleep on a sun lounger next to his wife but when he awoke, she was missing.

The elderly German national then attempted to look for his wife on the ship but couldn’t locate her. After a search was called for Imelda, she wasn’t located. Officials believed that she fell overboard.

It was later discovered that she was found in the ferry’s ventilation shaft, MailOnline reported. Imelda apparently wandered into the ship’s engine room and fell into the shaft.

“She should not have been able to enter the engine room area, it should have been curtained off,” Ernst said, Yahoo7 reported.

The body of the woman is still in the Italian city of Genoa as the public prosecutor hasn’t agreed to release it to her family.

“I want to be able to at least bury my wife. She should finally find her last resting place,” Ernst said.

An investigation into her death is now taking place.

Ernst Bechstein added that if the crew had searched properly, his wife “might still have been alive.”

According to a tally of deaths on cruise ships, at least 42 people died in 2016 alone.