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Funeral Home Owner Allegedly Lets Body Rot in Hearse

Harold Watson Sr., funeral director for the Watson and Sons Funeral Home

Harold Watson Sr., funeral director for the Watson and Sons Funeral Home

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (Feb. 25) – A funeral director accused of leaving a woman’s body to decay in a parked hearse after her relatives failed to pay the bill was arrested on a felony charge of abusing a corpse, police said Wednesday.

Embedded video from CNN Video

Watson and Sons Funeral Home embalmed the remains of Edna Kathleen Woods, 52, after she died of natural causes in November 2007, said Gadsden police Sgt. Jeff Wright. Relatives wanted the body cremated but failed to sign the necessary paperwork or pay owner Harold Watson Sr., he said.
After storing the corpse at his funeral home for more than a year, Wright said, the 76-year-old Watson decided to move it because he couldn’t reach the woman’s family.
Someone complained about a foul smell near downtown Gadsden, about 60 miles northeast of Birmingham, and officers on Tuesday found the woman’s remains in a cardboard box that was inside a locked hearse parked on a piece of property that Watson owns.

Watson was arrested after officers tracked the hearse to him. The body apparently was in the hearse for about two months, and the battery had been removed so no one could move the vehicle, Wright said.

Funeral directors with unclaimed bodies can file a petition to have counties dispose of remains.
“He knows better. The family wouldn’t pay him, so he just got rid of it,” Wright said.
Watson was free on bond and did not immediately return a message left at his funeral home. It was not immediately known if he had an attorney.

The head of the state office that regulates Alabama’s funeral industry said Watson could lose his director’s license if convicted.

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    Posted 5 years, 8 months ago at 9:15 am. Add a comment

    Superintendent Won’t Take Pay Raise

    After hearing about the big bonuses Wall street, Banks and AIG executives gave themselves for virtually running their operations into the ground, and the constant reminder of the hell hole we call public schools, it is good to read the following article about school superintendent.

    Friday, February 27
    ( updated 8:01 am)
    By J. Brian Ewing
    Staff Writer
    Greensboro News & Record

    Superintendent Maurice Moe Green Guilford, N.C. Public Schools

    Superintendent Maurice "Moe" Green Guilford, N.C. Public Schools

    Superintendent Maurice “Mo” Green asked the Guilford County Board of Education not to give him a raise this year.

    Although his contract requires a 3 percent raise in July, Green said the troubled economy would make his raise a hardship for the schools system. His salary is $250,000 a year, and a 3 percent raise would be $7,500.

    “I don’t believe I should be eligible for that given this point,” Green said.

    The school board unanimously approved his request.

    Green got thank yous from several board members, including Darlene Garrett who voted for another candidate for the superintendent position last year.

    “I obviously voted for the wrong person,” Garrett said

    Better be careful Dalene Garrett, Moe sounds like the type of person President Barack Obama is looking for.

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      Posted 5 years, 8 months ago at 8:37 am. Add a comment

      A SOLDIER’S STORY

      Sgt. Scott Stream, of Mattoon, Ill., second from left, is one of 2 members of the Illinois Guards 33rd Infantry Brigade Combat Team who were killed by an improvised explosive device Feb. 24, 2009, in Kandahar, Afghanistan. (Family photo / February 26, 2009)

      Sgt. Scott Stream, of Mattoon, Ill., second from left, is one of 2 members of the Illinois Guard's 33rd Infantry Brigade Combat Team who were killed by an improvised explosive device Feb. 24, 2009, in Kandahar, Afghanistan. (Family photo / February 26, 2009)

      If it costs me my life to protect our land and people then that is a small thing…’

      February 26, 2009

      As President Obama and military officials plan for a marked escalation in the number of American troops in Afghanistan, the powerful words of a fallen soldier show how much the mission continues to mean to the women and men on the ground.

      Illinois National Guard Sgt. Scott Stream, 39, of Mattoon, Ill., was killed Tuesday in Afghanistan. Below is a letter he wrote to a friend on New Year’s Eve. The Chicago Tribune received a copy of the letter from Stream’s mother.

      Wednesday, December 31, 2008 at 9:30am

      A strange thing…

      When I think about what surrounds me, the institutional corruption, the random violence, the fear and desperation. I feel the reasons why I am here more and more sharply. As we grow in our soldiers skills, surviving by finding the hidden dangers, seeing the secret motives and the shifting politics… we grow a set of skills that is unique and powerful in this situation.

      We also see what you cannot see in the States, you are surrounded by the love of Christ and faith in freedom and humanity, like a fish you think water is ‘a puff of air’ because it is always there, you do not notice it… we who are out of the water look back and see the world we love surrounded by enemies, poison and envy that wants to fall on you like a storm of ruin.

      We who joined with vague notions of protecting our country see how desperate the peril, how hungry the enemy and how frail the security we have is. So the more I love you all the more I feel I must keep fighting for you. The more I love and long for home the more right I feel here on the front line standing between you and the seething madness that wants to suck the life and love out of our land.

      Does that mean I cannot go home? I hope not, because I want this just to be the postponement of the joy of life, not the sacrifice of mine. If it costs me my life to protect our land and people then that is a small thing, I just hope that fate lets me return to the promise land and remind people just how great our land is.

      War is a young mans game, and I am getting an old mans head… it is a strange thing. I just hope that I am not changed so that I cannot take joy in the land inside the wire when I make it home. I want to be with you all again and let my gun sit in the rack and float on my back in a tube down a lazy river…

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        Posted 5 years, 8 months ago at 6:53 am. Add a comment