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Teaneck Woman Accuses Funeral Home of Losing Mother’s Ashes

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the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Teaneck NJ, in a heart-wrenching case that highlights the delicate trust between grieving families and funeral homes, Aisha Smith of Teaneck has filed a lawsuit against Carnie P. Bragg Funeral Home in Paterson. The lawsuit, lodged in Passaic County Superior Court, alleges a series of distressing events following the death of Smith’s mother, Valerie Wilson, in July 2022.

According to the lawsuit, Smith’s ordeal began shortly after her mother’s passing while on a trip to Baltimore. Carnie P. Bragg Funeral Home, entrusted with handling the funeral arrangements, allegedly failed to deliver on several critical promises. Smith claims that not only were her mother’s ashes withheld for two months after the funeral, but also that personal items belonging to her mother, including heirloom jewelry and other irreplaceable mementos, were never returned.

The lawsuit details a timeline fraught with disappointment and anguish. Despite entering into a contractual agreement with the funeral home, which included specific arrangements for cremation services, Smith asserts that promises made by the funeral home regarding the return of her mother’s belongings were repeatedly broken. The suit further alleges that Smith and her family were denied the opportunity to witness her mother’s cremation, a final request that went unfulfilled.

Smith recounts visiting the funeral home multiple times, desperately seeking closure and the return of her mother’s ashes and belongings. Each time, she claims, she was met with excuses and delays. The culmination of her frustration came when, on September 22, 2022, Smith resorted to demanding the immediate return of her mother’s remains and possessions. According to the lawsuit, what she received—a stained box purportedly containing her mother’s ashes—only added to her distress. Shockingly, Smith was informed that her mother’s jewelry and personal items had been cremated alongside her body, a revelation that left her deeply upset and questioning the funeral home’s conduct.

The emotional toll on Smith has been profound. The lawsuit describes how the failure to return her mother’s ashes in time for a planned internment ceremony on Valerie Wilson’s birthday in August 2022 was devastating. Smith, unable to find closure, has been left to grapple with ongoing uncertainty about the authenticity of the ashes and the irretrievable loss of her mother’s personal effects.

Legal counsel representing Smith emphasized the need for accountability in handling the remains and personal belongings of deceased loved ones. The lawsuit seeks to address what Smith perceives as gross negligence on the part of Carnie P. Bragg Funeral Home, highlighting not only the emotional distress caused but also the apparent insensitivity and unprofessional conduct exhibited in their handling of Valerie Wilson’s funeral arrangements.

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4 thoughts on “Teaneck Woman Accuses Funeral Home of Losing Mother’s Ashes

  1. I always wondered what sort of person would work in a crematory.
    My question is do they take the gold teeth?
    Thankfully my parents did not choose cremation.
    I remember the funeral director that was stealing tissue and bones and selling them a few years ago.
    Respect the dead

    1. Do you throw away money?

      1. do you continue making dumb comments

  2. WAY, way more to this story. Braggs side of the story will certainly prove to be interesting.

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