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Family speaks out about end of fight to get stillborn's cremated remains

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Photo: Video by ktnv.com

Family speaks out about end of fight to get stillborn's cremated remains

By Jennifer Kastner. CREATED Jan 12, 2014

Las Vegas, NV (KTNV) -- A local family's nearly three-month long fight to have their stillborn's remains cremated, has come to an end.

On Sunday night, the Kirchners spoke out about their relief that baby Evelyn's ashes are now back home. "We finally have her at peace. We don't have to worry about if she's still stuck in a morgue," said mother Jessica.

The couple has blamed Spring Valley Hospital for the delay. That's where the stillborn was delivered in late October.

Her remains were sent to Desert Memorial Cremation & Burial, where she wasn't cremated until last Friday. Her parents picked up her cremated remains last Friday night.

Jessica and Andrew Kirchner said they were fighting for answers from the hospital, funeral home and social services. Desert Memorial told Action News the hospital put the wrong name on the baby's paperwork.

Last Thursday night, the Valley Health System released a statement which reads, "Spring Valley Hospital extends our deepest sympathies to the family on their loss. We acknowledge that a clerical error was made regarding the completion of the death certificate. Once alerted to the error, it was quickly corrected and a new certificate was hand-delivered on Jan. 8. We wish to offer a heartfelt apology to the family for the delay on our end. However, we were also advised by the funeral home the death certificate was not the primary reason for the delay of the baby's cremation. Regardless of the situation, we have attempted to contact the family to offer to pay for the cremation but they have not returned our calls."

When Desert Memorial learned about the content of the statement, it agreed to some extent the death certificate was not the primary reason for the delay in the baby's cremation, but acknowledged that other agencies involved were halted by it, which created a trickle-down delay.

The Kirchners said they still believe the hospital is to blame, but now that they have Evelyn back, they're ready to put it all behind them.

"All we wanted was closure and now that we have it, there's nothing more to pursue. We're just glad that we have her home," says Jessica. "We're just happy and moving forward. It's just time to live our lives," added father and husband Andrew.

The Kirchners want to thank the media and the community for their help during this difficult time.

Jennifer Kastner

Jennifer Kastner

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Jennifer Kastner is a general assignment reporter for Action News.