These tough economic times have resulted in countless foreclosures and evictions, but one this past weekend in Pontiac, Michigan posed some unusual problems for authorities responsible for emptying the premises – what to do with the bodies. The business was a funeral home, and among the items that had to be removed were five bodies and the cremated remains of 22 others.
Local officials at the Oakland County Medical Examiner’s office worked with law enforcement, storing all of the bodies and cremated remains.
The funeral home, a family-run business which had been a staple in Pontiac’s struggling south end for more than 30 years, was known for taking care of families, even when they could not pay for services. Many locals felt outrage and sympathy, each having some ties to the funeral home through services for friends or relatives. Even the sheriff assigned to monitor the crowd that gathered during the eviction acknowledged that his grandmother’s service had been held at the funeral home.
Property records show several thousand dollars in tax liens on the funeral home.