The woman, whose husband had intended to donate his body to medical research, was dismayed to discover that it had been provided to the military and subsequently detonated.
Approximately 20,000 individuals, including Steve Hansen, donate their bodies annually, with regulations in 47 of the 50 US states overseen by the Uniform Anatomical Gift Act.
The regulations and guidelines for body and organ donation are established within those parameters.
The fundamental principle of the Uniform Anatomical Gift Act is the informed consent of the individual donating or their next of kin.
After all the agreements are signed, there is typically a requirement that the body be utilized for research or educational purposes, although exceptions may occur.
According to FBI Special Agent Paul Micah Johnson, who has investigated this matter for approximately a decade, there exists a significant gray and black market for deceased human bodies.
He told the media: "Medical research and education, particularly education, is a vague term and it is not clearly defined even in the Uniform Anatomical Gift Act."
"The misleading of families across the industry is quite common."
Hansen had consistently expressed his desire to donate his organs, but following his death in 2012 due to liver cirrhosis, medical professionals determined that his organs were not in suitable condition for donation.
During that period, Jill, his wife, was advised by hospice workers to consider donating Hansen's body to scientific research.
She told CBS: "What I envisioned was him being in some medical facility."
"I just thought, what a great candidate for them to learn about the results of alcoholism and what it does to a body."
Subsequently, following the transportation of his body to the Biological Resource Center in Arizona, which has been extensively covered, it was sold to the Department of Defense.
"They told me specifically that my husband had been used as a crash test dummy in a simulated Humvee explosion," Hansen explained.
According to court documents, the founder of BRC, Stephen Gore, sold Hansen's body without obtaining Jill's consent, and it was employed in a series of military and ballistics experiments, which led to the utter mutilation and violation of the donor's remains.
Hansen continued: "I was devastated."
"I would've never done it if I had known."
"I just kept telling him I was sorry."
Following the FBI's investigation of Gore's warehouse in 2014, the disturbing and graphic nature of the findings necessitated trauma therapy for some individuals.
He ultimately received a one-year prison sentence with an additional four years on parole.
Johnson holds the belief that, although the body donation industry is essential for scientific advancement and research, considerable efforts must be undertaken to restore public confidence.
He said: "It would be nice if there was one playbook for everyone."
"And so that would ideally be federal and it would cover everyone that deals with human body parts — for-profit, non-profit, all of them under one set of rules."
In 2022, a bill on body brokering was proposed to centralize regulations on body donation at the federal level; however, a voting date has not yet been scheduled.