MJ Edwards Funeral Home fined for losing body of infant
MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A funeral home has been fined $1,000 for losing an infant’s body last summer.
The baby was born premature on August 23, 2014, and died at the hospital, which released the body to MJ Edwards Funeral Home.
On September 4, the funeral home told the mother the infant’s body was missing.
She said they also told her they could do a memorial service without the body or wait to see if the body turned up.
“I feel like they treated him any kind of way because he was small. You wouldn’t have lost a 50- or 18-year-old,” she told WREG in September.
The mother went to the hospital, where she found proof the funeral home picked up the infant’s body on August 24 at 3 a.m., but what happened after that is a mystery.
She is now in the process of reaching a settlement with the funeral home.
Her attorney told WREG that even if the funeral home could provide an explanation as to what happened that day, it wouldn’t make things right since the baby’s body is still gone.
“Next year on August 23, to me, that’s going to be his first birthday. I’m not going to be able to go to the grave site to visit because I don’t know where he is,” the mother said.
The $1,000 fine is the maximum civil penalty per violation that the Tennessee State Board of Funeral Directors and Embalmers can assess.