Pierce County Medical Examiner seeks families to reclaim remains of deceased

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The friends and family members of 56 individuals who died in Pierce County have one last opportunity to reclaim their remains. The list of individuals can be found at www.co.pierce.wa.us/medicalexaminer.

The Pierce County Medical Examiner plans to scatter unclaimed ashes on the waters of Puget Sound in August. Ashes being scattered are from individuals who died between 2009 and 2016.

The Medical Examiner’s office will board a Pierce County Sheriff’s boat to respectfully scatter remains that have gone unclaimed. “Everything possible is done to find the next of kin or friends of the deceased,” said Dr. Thomas Clark, Medical Examiner. He added that family members or friends are not always interested in claiming remains.

“Everything possible is done to find the next of kin or friends of the deceased,” said Dr. Thomas Clark, Medical Examiner. He added that family members or friends are not always interested in claiming remains.

The practice of scattering ashes by the Medical Examiner started in 2014 due to limited resources and an inability to store records indefinitely. Clark said it is more dignified and environmentally friendly to scatter ashes than storing them on a shelf.

Contact the Pierce County Medical Examiner’s office at (253) 798-6494 prior to Aug. 28, 2017, to claim remains. Information on all unclaimed cases in Pierce County can be found at https://claimus.org/.

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