Chicago funeral home cremates woman early by mistake

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Friday, March 20, 2015
Sadie Carpenter
The children of Sadie Carpenter say a funeral home cremated her body before her family was able to say their final goodbyes.

CHICAGO, IL (KTRK) -- A funeral home made a mistake that cannot be reversed. It cremated a woman before her family was able to say their final goodbyes.

The children of Sadie Carpenter, 59, paid Leak and Sons Funeral Home to transport her body from her home in Orlando, Florida, where she passed, to Chicago, where her family lives. Carpenter's children wanted to see her one last time before she was cremated. However, when they showed up to Leak and Sons, they learned their mother had already been cremated.

"That was the main goal for everyone in the family was to see her and make sure she was okay," her son, Ken Carpenter, told WFLD-TV. "Who wouldn't want to see their loved ones?"

The owners of the funeral home told WFLD-TV that a new employee made the mistake. They said it was the first time in their 82-year history that a body was cremated by mistake.

Spencer Leak Senior said, "I take full responsibility. It's hurtful to me and my family."

"I'm not going to say that he didn't do what he was supposed to do. But, his staff, they did a terrible thing," Carpenter added.

According to WFLD-TV, Leak offered the Carpenter family a full refund and up to $25,000.

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