In March, the body of an elderly man was found on the floor of his apartment in downtown Tokyo. He had been dead for a month.

Neighbors hadn't noticed the octogenarian's absence. His bank made the rent payments on time, his family didn't visit, and the only reason for the body's discovery was the slight smell that troubled the tenant in the flat below.

In rapidly aging Japan, more people are dying alone and unnoticed in a country of 127 million, where 1 in 4 people is over 65. Looser family bonds play a role in their isolation.