When Mark Arabia, owner of the Pets Plus store, went out to the delivery man’s vehicle to collect the $1,000 fish supply he discovered a coffin.
“At first when I looked at it, I said, ‘Fish never come this way’,” he said.
He said he eventually learned that the body inside was that of a 65-year-old man from San Diego, California, who died of early onset Alzheimer’s Disease.
The body was supposed to go to a laboratory in Allentown, Pennsylvania, but there was an “unfortunate mix-up” at Philadelphia airport, said US Airways.
The airline, which had brought the body from California, said the problem was caused by a “verbal miscommunication between a delivery driver and the cargo representative”, adding that it was “deeply sorry”.
“I think it’s horrible. You can mess up, give us wrong stuff, wrong boxes. I guess this is how they treat bodies at the airport, which is a shame,” said Mr Arabia.
“If it was my family member, I’d really be broken up.”