01 May '17
‘You do this work
for the next of kin’
verschenen in RandKrant may 2017
Eddy De Valck is a trailblazer in forensic dentistry in our part of the world. Identifying severely disfigured, unrecognisable victims of disasters from their teeth.
The capsizing of the Herald of Free Enterprise was his first major disaster. He was also involved in the investigations during the Dutroux affair, the tsunami in South-East Asia and the attacks in Brussels and Zaventem.
‘All of these situations affect you but you learn how to cope with them. After all, you do this work for the next of kin. They want a definitive answer as soon as possible. The only way of achieving certainty is by using primary identification methods: teeth, fingerprints or DNA. Secondary characteristics, such as documents, clothing, height or hair colour, can only help achieve some progress with a case or fill in some of the gaps.’