Remember back on September 6th when Cusack Mortuary told me that my mother was being cremated and I might have her ashes as early as the next day?
And then remember how I emailed Dr. Allen Cusack on the 11th and asked him for a status update and he said he’d let me know when I should receive the ashes?
And then on the 14th I sent another email asking for an update?
Then remember how I didn’t hear anything from him so I called on the 17th to see what was happening? (He said that my mother’s ashes were put in the mail to me over the weekend.)

At about one-fifteen on the afternoon of the 19th I received this email:

Good Afternoon

I need you to resend your sister’s address. The address I had was returned. Because we sent them together, the packages were returned. Please help with this and your mother’s cremains will be resent today

I replied immediately with my sister’s mailing address (which I had already sent him on the 4th).

Then I called Allen at 1:41 PM (Pacific) and we spoke for nine minutes. He told me that he had been dealing with some medical problems — which he acknowledged should be irrelevant to me — and was very sorry that his mortuary hadn’t managed to get my mother’s ashes in the mail to me yet. I said that I certainly hoped he was going to FedEx or overnight them, and he said he would. He promised that he would make sure it was done that afternoon and that he’d call and / or email me tomorrow (the 20th) with tracking numbers.

He also replied via email at 2:11 PM with:

Thank you. I will see to it your Mother arrives home as soon as possible.

I didn’t hear anything from Cusack Mortuary on the 20th. Or the 21st.

At 7:34 PM (10:34 PM on the East coast!) on the 22nd — what would have been my mother’s 64th birthday — I received the following email:

Mr. Gagne,

I am sending this for Allen Cusack who has taken ill again. He has asked me to apologize for him with hope that you would understand. He’s really overdoing it and we’ve had to make him sit down and relax. Your mother’s cremated remains will be to you on Monday as well as to your sister. Here are the tracking numbers.

California #[redacted]

Washington #[redacted]

Please accept our apologies and if you have any questions, he might be back in the office Monday if [name redacted] (his wife) allows him, but we’re all trying to help her keep him still.

Thank you,
[name redacted], Administrative Aide
Cusack Mortuaries

The tracking numbers I was given aren’t found at,, or