BALDWIN COUNTY, Ala. (WKRG) — Inside a storage unit, something unimaginable. The cremated remains of 13 people.
“That was the farthest thing from my mind when I thought about doing an auction for a storage unit. I didn’t ever think that.” For $30, Rebekah, who agreed to talk to us if we didn’t identify her, won two storage units in Mobile. She loaded up the contents and brought them to Baldwin County.
“We realized it was a funeral director’s unit. No big deal,” said Rebekah. “It became a big deal once she and her husband opened a container, ‘He was like what’s this?’ I looked and I was like that is cremated remains.”
The cremations happened as far back as 1992 with the most current from 2019. As soon as Rebekah discovered them, her first thought was to reunite them with relatives. For the last few weeks, she has been doing just that.
“It’s actually been quite easy surprisingly,” said Rebekah. “I’ve been lucky every time I’ve gotten the correct family members and they have been okay with it.”
Five families have gotten that phone call. Cassandra Jones was one of them. Jones’ husband Dan died in 2015.
“After the funeral was over with, they told me they would take care of everything and to my understanding, that is what I thought they had done,” said Jones. She is still trying to process what really happened.
“It’s been devastating,” said Jones. “It has truly been devastating. It just seems like I’m reliving this all over again.”
More families could get that same phone call, according to Rebekah.
“I immediately wanted to find their family first,” said Rebekah. “I didn’t want to get in trouble for having them but I also wanted to make sure the family had the option first.”
She said she will keep trying to reunite the families because it is the right thing to do. Of the five families she has contacted, only one has declined the ashes.
The families she is still trying to contact are listed below:
- Steve L. Frazier, DOD: (Date of Death): 02/24/92
- Carl Anthony Williams, DOD: 06/13/14 Cremated on 07/03/14
- Kendal Jay Brown, Cremated: 1/18/15
- Irene Foster, Cremated: 07/02/93
- Larry Cecil Ross, DOD: 11/08/03
- Willie Martin, JR.
- Jimmie Lee Craig, Cremated: 07/09/97
- Melissa Stallworth, Cremated: 01/05/94
- Jimmie Herrin, DOD: 04/13/19