Daughter sues funeral home after her mother was buried in another woman’s clothes and in the wrong cemetery
MONMOUTH COUNTY, NEW JERSEY: A woman is suing a Jewish funeral home after burying her mother in the wrong cemetery. And, as if that weren’t enough, the funeral home called Bloomfield-Cooper Jewish Chapels located in Ocean Township, New Jersey, buried the woman’s mother next to a complete stranger dressed in the clothes of another woman.
According to the Daily Mail, the woman, identified as Robin Kay Lord, discovered the incident during the service on October 5, 2020. Mourners were horrified and a 90-year-old woman nearly fainted. The deceased has been identified as Janet Kay, who died on October 3, 2020 at the age of 82 after a long illness. According to Jewish traditions, funerals usually take place the day after the death.
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“I want them to be accountable”
Robin Kay Lord, who is a criminal defense barrister, told the Daily Mail: “I want them to be responsible so another family doesn’t have to go through this. She added: “I remember specifically telling them to make sure she was wearing the clothes I gave them, because if we opened the coffin and she was wearing someone else’s clothes, that would be a complete nightmare.”
The funeral home worker ‘reassured’ her that they would treat her mother with dignity and clothes would be placed on her after the traditional ‘tahara’ [an ancient Jewish ritual of washing the body of a deceased person before they are buried]. Lord revealed that she expected the funeral home to follow custom, but instead they told her they couldn’t bury her mother until two days later.
‘I told them to ‘cut the shit up and tell me where my mom is’
On October 5, 2020, the body of Lord’s mother did not arrive as her family and friends waited for the service to begin. She pointed out that the mourners and the rabbi waited for the coffin at the cemetery for almost half an hour. She then called the funeral home. “They were stuttering and stammering,” Lord recalled, “I told them to cut the shit out and tell me where my mom is.”
Lord further said she was on FaceTime with the funeral home when she saw a strange woman in a casket wearing her mother’s purple suit, long gold chain and her mother’s wedding ring. She lost her temper as she said, “I was screaming, ‘What did you do to her? Where is my mother?'”. She continued, “Then they told me they didn’t know where she was.” Lord revealed that the service was then held without her mother’s body She later learned that the body had been buried in another Jewish cemetery in North Jersey in a grave which lay next to a complete stranger .
Lord was shocked when she learned that she was also wearing another woman’s clothes with someone else’s wedding ring. His mother’s body was swapped with another woman as they died the same day. Speaking on the same subject, Lord claimed: ‘They did the laundry together and that’s when their bodies were switched,’ adding: ‘Bewildering, just inconceivable.’ She further explained, “My mother’s body was not handled properly.
Lord told DailyMail the funeral home lied to him, telling him his mother could not be buried on October 4 the day after she died. But, on October 4, she was buried in the wrong grave and in the wrong cemetery. In order to correct the failed situation, Kay’s body had to be exhumed and her daughter had to identify her decomposing body. It was October 8 when the family held a private ceremony. Lord’s mother was placed in a comet mausoleum in Marlboro, New Jersey, which was now her final resting place.