Blueberry box cremains

LAS VEGAS (FOX5) -- A North Las Vegas man wants answers after his brother was cremated in Chicago and his cremains were scheduled to be shipped to North Las Vegas.

For months, the family said they didn't know where the ashes were and when they finally arrived, they came in an old blueberry box. 

"Where's Chester? Where's Chester? What they do with him?" 

Those are the questions Durley Rankins asked about her son Chester for more than two months. He died in August. 

"We all have our vices in life and you know my brother struggled with drug addiction," said Chester's older brother Duval Rankins. 

Rankins said he called Brian Pickett Funeral Home in Chicago more than a dozen times and no one called him back. 

"We specifically left messages for Brian Pickett ... I'm out here in Las Vegas, I'm so frustrated I don't know what to do," said Duval. 

Funeral Owner Brian Pickett said over the phone  that a funeral director was in communication with the family. 

"I dropped off the cremains on the 21st of October," said Pickett. 

Pickett said the post office tried to deliver the package, however Duval said that he didn't get any notice of a delivery or any notification of a package at the post office. 

Duval said no one from the funeral home gave him a tracking number. For weeks, Chester's remains sat at a North Las Vegas Post Office. On Tuesday, after a news station in Chicago got involved, Pickett found the tracking number and called Duval. 

Duval rushed to the post office and picked up his brother's cremains packaged in a blueberry box.

"How would you feel if your loved one was sent off in a blueberry box? ... That's extremely disrespectful," said Duval. He said it came in a box you "could just put rags in" with "no care."

Pickett said the cremains were in a proper box and it was just shipped in the blueberry box. 

"I did apologize for that ... We do everything we can to satisfy our families," said Pickett. 

Duval and his mom asked for a full refund. Between funeral services and cremation, they spent more than $5,000. Pickett said they can't give a full refund but they offered $500 and an urn. 

Copyright 2019 KVVU (KVVU Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved

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