Where is the hard drive?

Is the lack of password the main problem, or do you want data recovery from corrupted media?
The two problems need slightly different approaches.

If it is a password issue, then here are some good methods to work through:

Although involved (but satisfying! :) ), I have used method two, many times to gain admin rights over a locked out PC.

If it's purely data recovery, then a Linux live USB stick is the way to go.
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Lack of password is the problem. User is deceased.
Then, as above - I would go through the steps of creating a new admin account.
The steps in the link are pretty well laid out, but let us know if this isn't for you.
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