Grieving family waits 10 hours for mother's body to be picked up

Grieving family waits 10 hours for mother's dead body to be picked up

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A funeral home finally picked up the body for free. A funeral home finally picked up the body for free.
Karen Tharp was 48 years old when she passed away. Karen Tharp was 48 years old when she passed away.
TAYLOR, Mich. (WJBK) -

Karen Tharp, a mother of six from Taylor, was 48 years old when she passed away at home. She likely died due to her enlarged heart and had previous medical issues.

But her family's shock turned into desperation Thursday when they were having trouble finding someone to pick up the body.

"No one knew she was going to pass this fast, and they told me because she had prior medical conditions that they couldn't do [anything]," says her daughter Felicia Basto. "Every time I walk in the door I [have] to see my mom dead on the couch because nobody will come get her."

The family called Taylor Fire and EMS, who gave them contact information to a local funeral home.

The family also contacted the medical examiner, but they wouldn't come pick up the body either.

Taylor police say standard procedure calls for the medical examiner to pick up a body in a homicide or suspicious death, but not in hospice situations. State law also says the examiners are not obligated to pick up hospice cases.

The family then contacted a funeral home, which wanted $795 up front - money the family does not have.

Finally, 10 hours later, the family found a funeral home that offered to pick up the body free of charge.

"I am so thankful because my mom was a wonderful person and she deserves this, and I thank them from the bottom of my heart," says Basto.

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