Funeral home accused of ashes mix up denied continuance

John Suayan, Galveston Bureau Aug. 7, 2012, 3:42am


GALVESTON - A local judge has denied a funeral home's request to reset an August trial in a case over the incorrect disposition of a man's ashes.

Carnes Funeral Home Inc. sought to continue Rose Woods-Brown's case from the current start date of Aug. 13, but Galveston County Court at Law No. 2 Judge Barbara Roberts denied the motion for continuance on July 19.

Woods-Brown, a Spring resident, is suing Carnes on allegations it ignored her instructions regarding her father's ashes.

According to the original petition filed July 13, 2011, the funeral home gave the cremated remains of her father, Spencer Woods, to a sibling instead to Woods-Brown and her daughter as was designated in an agreement.

The suit states the decedent placed Woods-Brown in charge of the disposition of his body prior to his death on Feb. 3, 2011.

Woods-Brown and Carnes agreed all business aspects in connection with her father's final wishes would be handled by Woods-Brown, the suit adds.

The complainant contends that she went to retrieve the ashes after going out of town only to discover that Carnes allegedly gave the ashes and the death certificate to her sister without her authorization.

Carnes failed to return or even locate the remains, the suit says.

However, the funeral home argues that Woods-Brown's case is "frivolous" and that she "has not been damaged in any manner whatsoever by (its) conduct."

Carnes moved for continuance because its lead counsel is in the midst of her third trimester of pregnancy and is under doctor's orders not to travel.

Another attorney from her firm who appeared in her place at a hearing earlier this month was not aware of the due date, the motion submitted July 17 says.

Attorney Koetting B. Jackson with Cokinos, Bosien & Young in Houston is representing Carnes.

Cause No. 65,636

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