Family claims they are 'devastated’ by how funeral home handled death of loved one

A family says they are devastated after losing their loved one and how the funeral home handled their death.

News 12 Staff

Feb 9, 2021, 3:56 AM

Updated 1,259 days ago

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A family says they are devastated after losing their loved one and how the funeral home handled their death. 
The family of 87-year-old Ernesto Garcia says he died in his home of natural causes on Jan. 18. 
They say that after his death, hospice came and gave them a death pronouncement and told them to call a funeral home. 
They say they called the Ortiz Funeral Home, and that staff came the same day and picked up the body. 
Irene Estrada says that from that point forward, there was a lot of confusion. 
"They are calling the family on a daily basis saying you need to call the medical examiner, the health department, you gotta call this number and you gotta bring the signature to us,” said Estrada. 
A source from the New York City Funeral Services community tells News 12 that hospice should have initiated the death certificate. 
When that didn’t happen, they say the responsibility of resolving the problem fell on the funeral home. 
That’s when the family says they contacted Councilman Fernando Cabrera. He tells News 12 that he reached out to the medical examiner for guidance and the family was able to obtain a death certificate on Feb. 3. 


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