Phoenix mortuary sued for mistakenly cremating woman’s body

Mar 1, 2023, 4:15 AM | Updated: 5:57 am
(Facebook Photo/EastLake Mortuary)...
(Facebook Photo/EastLake Mortuary)
(Facebook Photo/EastLake Mortuary)

PHOENIX — The children of a Phoenix resident filed a lawsuit against a Phoenix mortuary on Monday after their mother’s body was mistakenly cremated.

The lawsuit filed by the family alleges EastLake Mortuary was contacted for funeral and viewing services shortly after Joann Stephens passed away last year in November.

When the family went to finalize arrangements, they were allegedly told there would be no service because Stephens was cremated the day before.

The plaintiffs said EastLake had previously agreed to transport and store Stephens’ remains, prepare her body for viewing, provide a casket for viewing and arrange a memorial service at a nearby church.

The mortuary is being sued for breach of contract, negligence, negligent infliction of emotional distress and intentional infliction of emotional distress.

The lawsuit also stated that cremation was against Stephen’s beliefs and that numerous extended family members had flown out from across the country only to learn after they arrived what had happened.

In addition to the alleged actions of the mortuary, the plaintiffs allege the mortuary attempted to cover up their actions and what happened to her cremains.

As no proof or verification of the identify of the cremains were ever given to the family, they believe the ashes they were given are not Stephen’s actual cremains.

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Phoenix mortuary sued for mistakenly cremating woman’s body