CLAYTON, Mo. (CN) – Schrader Funeral Home put the wrong body in a casket and made the grieving family undress the body before it would accept that it was not their father and husband, the family in St. Louis County Court.
Jeani Ward, one of four individual plaintiffs, bought a prepaid funeral plan for her father, Frederick Schnabel, in August 2007 and contacted Schrader in September 2008, shortly after her father’s death, the suit states.
Ward says Schrader put the wrong body in her father’s suit in his casket and refused to believe the family even as her mother cried uncontrollably in her wheelchair. Schrader representatives made the family take the shirt off the body to look for scars from a heart bypass surgery, the suit states.
Ward claims Schrader had mistakenly buried her father in another grave earlier that week and couldn’t immediately find his body. The family was forced to continue the visitation and the funeral service the next day with a closed empty casket, while Schrader tried to find the body. The plaintiffs seek undetermined actual and punitive damages and are represented by Lori Koch of St. Louis.