Families sue over wrong-body burials

July 19, 2012 at 2:07 PM

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla., July 19 (UPI) -- Eight Jewish families have sued one of the largest U.S. funeral home and cemetery companies, saying remains were mishandled at a South Florida cemetery.

One of the plaintiffs, Myrna Glickman, says that when her mother died the Star of David Memorial Gardens Cemetery discovered someone was already buried next to her father, the South Florida Sun Sentinel reported. Another family discovered a Shirley Minsky buried next to their father even though their mother, also Shirley Minsky, is still alive.

"My client said even if there is another Shirley Minsky, didn't you check to see if it was the right Shirley Minsky?" Debi Chalik, a lawyer for the plaintiffs, told the newspaper. "We had to have the other Shirley Minsky disinterred. They are supposed to match documentation, Social Security numbers and the burial stones and details at the graves. It seems to be happening too often for it to be sloppy conduct."

The lawsuit involves Star of David in North Lauderdale and Menorah Gardens Cemetery & Funeral Chapels in Southwest Ranches. Both are owned by Service Corporation International, a Texas-based company that owns 1,800 funeral homes and cemeteries.

A spokeswoman for the company said it had just learned of the lawsuit.

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