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EndNotes

Sat., Oct. 26, 2013, 6 a.m.

Mistaken identity

Spokane sunset as seen from Cliff Drive overlook. (Cheryl-Anne Millsap / Photo by Cheryl-Anne Millsap)
Spokane sunset as seen from Cliff Drive overlook. (Cheryl-Anne Millsap / Photo by Cheryl-Anne Millsap)

Earlier this week a Western Washington family opened the casket of their loved one to say a last good-bye and found – another man’s body (story).

Somehow the bodies were mixed up and the body of the man people thought was in the casket had been cremated. The deceased's wishes included the feeling he was terrified of the cremation process and wanted his body to be buried.

Must we re-create the honoring of our deceased loved ones to include “safeguarding” their bodies? Some cultures have a family member remain with the body from time of death to burial or cremation. Seems that in the intimate process of what happens to a loved one’s remains, we must demand zero tolerance of errors. 

(S-R archive photo: Spokane sunset as seen from Cliff Drive overlook.)




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Spokesman-Review features writer Rebecca Nappi, along with writer Catherine Johnston of Olympia, Wash., discuss here issues facing aging boomers, seniors and those experiencing serious illness, dying, death and other forms of loss.