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Mystery surrounds whereabouts of Casey Kasem’s remains

Radio personality Casey Kasem with his award backckstage at the 2003 Radio Music Awards October 27, 2003 in Las Vegas. (Photo by Carlo Allegri/Getty Images) Photo: Image by Getty Images

Mystery surrounds whereabouts of Casey Kasem’s remains

By Phyllis Stark. CREATED Jul 21, 2014

The sad family drama that surrounded radio legend Casey Kasem prior to his death last month continues postmortem as a mystery swirls around the location of his remains. 

Here’s what we know: A funeral home in Washington state that had initial responsibility for the body shipped it to Montreal last Monday, according to the Ottawa Citizen. Corey Gaffney, the president of Gaffney Funeral Home of Tacoma, Washington, says he confirmed the remains arrived in Montreal.
 
”What we did was made sure that Casey got to the airport, we released custody of Casey to the airline," Gaffney said in an interview Saturday night.
 
"The airline signed for that and acknowledged that and then at that point we returned to our office, tracked his flight to Montreal, confirmed that he had arrived, reported that to Mrs. Kasem.”
 
”When he landed in Montreal, I ceased being the funeral director in charge,” Gaffney added.
 
From there, however, details get murky.
 
“A death certificate filed in a Washington State court July 15 listed Montreal funeral home Urgel Bourgie as the place of disposition, and July 14 as the date of disposition,” according to the Ottawa Citizen. “The Montreal funeral home told The Canadian Press on Saturday it had no record of Kasem's remains as being at the facility or that they were supposed to arrive.”
 
The death certificate was filled out by wife Jean Kasem and listed an address in Jerusalem, Israel, according to a copy filed in Pierce County Superior Court, the Ottawa Citizen reports.
 
Jean Kasem has been publicly feuding with her husband’s three oldest children from his previous marriage since last fall, and near the end of her husband’s life she pulled him out of a California nursing home and moved him to the home of friends in Washington, without informing the children of his whereabouts.
 
Oldest daughter Kerri Kasem is seeking an autopsy on her father’s body, and last week asked a judge for a restraining order preventing the body from being cremated until that autopsy has been completed.
 
“Judge Ronald Culpepper ordered Jean Kasem to ensure that the radio host's remains were preserved and that his body stayed at the Tacoma funeral home until the court decided on the autopsy petition following a July 25 hearing,” the Ottawa Citizen reports.
 
It’s unclear why Jean, Kasem’s wife of 34 years, shipped his body to Montreal. The couple lived in Los Angeles.
Phyllis Stark

Phyllis Stark

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Phyllis Stark is the Digital Executive Producer - National Content for Journal Broadcast Group.