Funeral Home Admits to Burying Body of Wrong Boy; Family Seeking Closure – Video Report

Following an investigation into a suspected wrongful burial, a funeral home has admitted to burying the wrong boy due to the misidentification of the remains.

After being informed that their family may have potentially been given the wrong body for burial, Toni-Ann Alexander and Kenroy Gooden shared their plight with the press. While the funeral home required further investigation to determine the truth, Alexander suspected that the boy that they recently buried was not her son, O’Brien Gooden.

Gooden passed away last year in December from drowning. According to TVJ News, the 11-year-old’s remains were initially placed in the care of a funeral home of an undisclosed name, referred to as Funeral Home B. Funeral Home B engaged the services of a second funeral home, Funeral Home A, to store Gooden’s body.

According to Tennyson Cornwall, the director of Tranquility Funeral Home, this is not an uncommon practice, though funeral homes contracted by the government should not partake in it. Tennyson also explained that at times, smaller funeral homes will engage the services of larger homes because they do not have the adequate facility space to store the bodies.

In addition to storing the remains of Gooden, Funeral Home A was also housing the remains of 12-year-old gunshot victim Omarco Brown, who also passed away last December. A representative of Funeral Home A disclosed that she discovered the mix-up on Monday while making arrangements for Brown’s burial this weekend.

According to the representative, it was then that time she realised that Brown’s body was gone and Gooden’s remains were still at the funeral home. She said that Brown, whose body build was the same as Gooden’s, was accidentally prepared and sent off for burial.

The mix-up was reportedly because of a breach in the funeral home’s procedure.

“I just cannot explain because it has never happened to us. Our bodies are always tagged,” the representative stated.

Consumed by grief after Gooden’s death and the improper burial, the 11-year-old’s family is seeking closure. With Brown’s burial scheduled for the next few days, his family is distraught by the news.

Following the discovery, Funeral Home A has applied to the Ministry of Health and the St. Catherine Municipal Corporation to have the body exhumed and prepared for reburial. In light of Brown’s wrongful burial, the lack of regulations that the Jamaica Association of Certified Embalmers has been calling for has been placed back in the spotlight.

According to the Minister of Health, Dr Christopher Tufton, the legislation for those regulations lies in the Ministry of Local Government. Tufton said it is the ministry’s responsibility to lead the next phase of tabling the regulations.

Watch the report on the wrongful burial of Omarco Brown below.





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