The family of a South Florida woman is demanding answers from a funeral home after they accused the company of losing their grandmother’s body then allegedly tried to trick her loved ones by displaying a stranger in her casket instead.
WSVN reports, the grieving family members of Norma Newman said they were mourning the elderly woman at a wake held at the Roy Mizell & Kurtz Funeral Home in Fort Lauderdale Saturday night when they noticed it wasn’t Newman’s body lying in the casket.
Her sister, Cuinthia Webber, told the station:
“I went up to view her body. I said ‘No, this is not my sister. This is somebody we did not know.’ We did not know the person that was lying in the casket.”
They said numerous physical features didn’t seem to line up, and Newman’s niece Suzette Walsh pointed out the obvious missing characteristic, her aunt’s missing mole.
“We asked her about the mole on our aunt’s face. They said that they covered it up with makeup. There was no mole there. Makeup couldn’t cover it because it’s kind of protruding out of her face.”
Then Newman’s granddaughter, Camisha Stewart, noticed the person in the open casket had five toes and her grandmother only had four on one foot. She said:
“They said she has all five of her toes. That lady is not my grandmother.”
The family is convinced that the funeral home displayed the wrong body and tried to cover it up. Webber said:
“They admit that this was not the person that was supposed to be in the casket.”
WSVN reached out to Roy Mizell & Kurtz Funeral Home for comment but they declined to comment.
Newman’s family said they spoke with the company’s funeral director, but they allegedly had no answers.
The family said they’re now suffering a double loss because they can’t locate their loved one’s body.
Marcia Durrant-Aris, Newman’s niece, tearfully said:
“At this point, we don’t know where my aunt’s body is. We don’t know. We all came in here to mourn the loss of my aunt, and this is what we get, and nobody is taking ownership. We don’t know — many questions, unanswered questions. That’s not right.”
WPMI reports, an Alabama family just won a $12 million lawsuit from a funeral home that lost a mother’s remains.
According to one legal site, Newman’s family may be entitled to compensation for negligence if Roy Mizell & Kurtz Funeral Home cannot find Newman’s body.
Family members will continue to investigate situation “cause they don’t honestly know where she’s at,” said Stewart.
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