Man whose body odour diverted plane has died

Russian musician Andrey Suchilin died on June 25 after suffering from a flesh-eating disease that caused him to smell.
Russian musician Andrey Suchilin died on June 25 after suffering from a flesh-eating disease that caused him to smell.PHOTO: FACEBOOK/ ANDREY SUCHILIN

A passenger who caused a plane to make an emergency landing last month because he smelled so bad has died, British media reported yesterday.

The 58-year-old man has been identified as Andrey Suchilin, a Russian musician.

According to reports, Mr Suchilin contracted a flesh-eating disease while on holiday in the Canary Islands.

Mr Suchilin was onboard a Transavia flight from the Canary Islands to Amsterdam when the flight had to divert to Fargo in Portugal due to his "unbearable" body odour.

Passengers onboard Flight HV5666 began to vomit and faint from the stench emanating from the man. Staff had also tried to quarantine him in the toilet, but to no avail.

One of the passengers had said: "It was like he hadn't washed himself for several weeks."

On landing in Fargo, Mr Suchilin was taken by medical personnel onto a bus.

Several British news outlets including the Mirror and Mail Online reported that Mr Suchilin died from severe tissue necrosis, or gangrene.

According to Russian news channel RT, Mr Suchilin wrote on his Facebook page shortly after the plane made the diversion to Portugal.

"The tragic and comic component of this whole situation is that I caught a disease, which (let's not say how and why) makes a person quite stinky," he said, according to a translation by RT.

Mr Suchilin was hospitalised in Portugal, where he battled the disease with multiple operations, according to his Facebook page updated by his girlfriend Lidia Tikhonovich.

According to the Facebook posts, doctors were unable to figure out the exact cause of the necrosis.

However, on Monday, his health deteriorated and he died from failure of his heart, lungs and kidneys.

Mr Suchilin was known as one of the top guitar players in Russia and was considered a pioneer of rock music in the Soviet Union.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 29, 2018, with the headline 'Man whose body odour diverted plane has died'. Print Edition | Subscribe