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M. M.Roundtree

My dad passing and trying to find closure

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My dad past away in May of this year. My grandad called and told me this sad news and told me he got with the city program and eternity funeral home so he can be cremated because the family didn't have money to bury him. Now this is going to be long but I have been dealing with this since May and I have to let this out. He also discussed this with my uncle over the phone while he was at the funeral home making the arrangements. I know i didn't have the money and my uncle didn't either but my thing is my grandad did not make the effort from the start or even bring up the idea to have a proper burial. No one in my family has ever been cremated until now. He didn't consult all of us to see if we had the funds to bury him or if we could raise money. He acted like he had to rush and make a decision on the spot mind you I am the next of kin and he didn't include me on any arrangements or even ask me if i wanted him buried. I didn't even know anything about my rights as next of kin til my uncle told me. But this is how we found out something strange not right was going on with my grandad surrounding my dad's arrangements with the funeral home. When he first told me they had  plans to cremate him they would have a viewing of my dad's body and only a few close family members could attend. He said he would have to list me as the sister because its only next of kin and too much of a hassle with paperwork to put me down as the daughter. Immediately I was thinking what? But I am the daughter i didn't know the order really then so I just said ok. So i call my uncle and he's immediately like that doesn't make any sense. My uncle speaks to his wife who has kinda been through this type of thing before with her own family and knows more about the law and says thats not right i am next of kin. She basically educated me more about that and said thats not right to put me down as the sister when I am his daughter. So then they fly down to help me figure out whats going on we find out talking with the funeral home that Im not even on the list to see him. So all this time Im thinking my grandad loves and cares for me but in reality hes doing sneaky mess like this. Now if my dad knew all this mess was going on and I wasn't on there he would've been pissed. He loved me and was always so protective of me. He wasn't always around he didn't get to see me much and he was going through his own personal struggles but whenever there was important milestone  in my life always made an effort to be there. Whenever it was my birthday he would call to wish me a happy bday. He always wanted to see me he was there for my highschool graduation. Knowing how protective he was of me he would'nt have allowed my own grandad to do me like this. So the day of the viewing after finding out this the family had all showed up. my uncle didn't even want to look at them. Before all this though we set up a go fund me to help raise money for his funeral/burial thats what we wanted. But then grandad goes and puts up on the go fund me page that its a scam/ a hoax that its not real. My uncle had to go up on there and say its a real go fund me account to raise moneyfor my dad's funeral. I had to advocate and say this is real all I want is a proper funeral for my dad. Sadly we still didn't raise enough money in time because of my grandad putting that on there swayed alot of ppl that would've donated to not because they were sketical. My grandad planted that seed of doubt. Still til this day I dont know why he did this. Ive been dealing with all this and its now August. Since we didn't raise enough we had to turn his body back over to the city for them to cremate him at no charge and we refunded the ppl who donated to the go fund me. Now I explained to the funeral home and I have my family members who were actually there with me as witnesses of what we spoke of and I am rightful heir and that the ashes should go to me I am the legal next of kin even brought my birth certificate they even said they would be going to me.  I was expecting the ashes to go to me. But the lady said I would be signing for the city to give permission to cremate him. So I signed and I thought that was that. During the time of waiting I spoke to my uncle and voice my idea of wanting to still bury his ashes in the same cemetery as my grandma his mom. Still have a service or memorial for my dad. Then I get a text from my grandad saying he picked up the ashes give him a moment he's having a hard time he's upset and sad whatever.  The whole time im like wait a minute and Im fuming. The ashes were suppose to go to me. I ask him why would he have the ashes and he goes on this rant like he's the one angry talking bout my son's at peace and thats all i care about and that he scattered the ashes on commonwealth. Now I'm even more angry and hurt I was planning to have a proper service thinking I was getting the ashes and he got them anyway I never wanted that to happen that was the worst thing that could happen and it did. I call the funeral home call my uncle and his wife they consoled me. The funeral home said that I signed for him to get the ashes or rights to him. I was like no no no. I did not I was signing for the city to take back his body in order  for him to be creamted. They knew I was and they knew I was furious. So they said to make both parties happy they will call him to split the ashes. They call him and he agrees to hand over half the ashes so now Im thinking wait a minute he sent me this text saying he spread the ashes(i still have the text btw) I go up there they hand me ashes saying its my dad. Now im stuck thinking who's lying was he lying.?Why would he tell me that? Thats cruel to just lie about something like that saying u scattered the ashes. The funeral said they got the ashes from him half anyway. I'm just like who's telling the truth. Now i dont even know if these are his ashes. My grandad had basically messed up everything and denied me closure. I just want to heal and set this all to rest. I just want answers from him and I  want the truth but he wont give that. I'm still actively trying to get records and the paper that they I signed. To see for myself because that wasn't right We all sat in front of the staff at that funeral home told them my grandad was wrong and they still thought it was okay to release ashes to him.

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kayc   

I'm very sorry for your loss.  It could be your grandfather knew something you didn't.  I don't know where you are but here they charge you storage every day, and it adds up quickly so time is of the essence, by the time you raise money, it's risen sky high.  Burial is very expensive, even cremation has risen astronomically.  I know someone whose dad passed and she didn't have $ either, they quoted her $900 for cremation but it was beginning of the weekend and the doctor hadn't signed off yet.  By the time he did it was almost $2,000.00 with "storage fees", she wasn't expecting that.  We had to put a can out for her for donations where she works as a cook to get $ to bury her dad, it's not easy.  Burial is way more expensive.  It cost my mom several thousand to bury my dad 35 years ago, I'd hate to see what it is now.

You can still have a service, even a year later, even without the ashes.  Your grandfather may have lied to you about spreading the ashes because he thought you'd want that or it'd be settled, but maybe he felt comfort hanging on to them.  Everyone is different, some spread right away, some wait.  You'd have to ask your grandfather why he lied, no one knows but him.  I hope you can get your answers without damaging your relationship, you've already lost your dad, you don't want to lose anyone else.  I don't know how old your grandfather is, but if your dad is dead, you may not have a lot of years left with your grandfather.  I know, as a parent, if I lost a child, no matter what age, I would have a really hard time with that, I'd never be the same, I'm sure that's how he's feeling.

Families can act peculiar at times like this, because we're so emotional yet we handle things differently, but in our grief we aren't always thinking with clarity, we have grief fog, and it affects us greatly.  I hope you can arrange to have a service for your dad and it will bring you some needed peace.

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Thank you thats nice to know that my family and I can still have a service even without ashes. I didnt know that. Right now I am currently reaching out to him to see if he will be honest with me. You're right he is the only one that can help me clear some things up.

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Bless your heart and I'm so sorry you had to go through all of this. Sending many hugs and prayers to you that you finally get some peace and closure.

Hold a very nice family memorial wherever you see fit; maybe one of your dad's favorite places? Have a nice meal somewhere also where you all can share memories..everyone paying for their meals. I'm sure family isn't going to mind a bit.

God Bless.

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