ZANESVILLE, Ohio (WCMH) — Angela Johnson, 51, waited anxiously for the postal carrier for three days, but her father’s cremated remains were nowhere in sight.
And then, the afternoon the box of Thomas Moffet’s ashes arrived, her regular postal carrier was away. The substitute carrier allegedly carried the box upside down and dropped it on her porch.
Moffet died on April 14 in New York City.
“My uncle held [his ashes] for a memorial at his church, which I agreed to,” said Johnson. “On May 16, my uncle put him in the mail, and they lost him.”
The U.S. Postal Service (USPS) admitted the package was misrouted and delivered two days after the guaranteed date of delivery.
“They finally brought him home to me on Friday, at about three o’clock in the afternoon,” Johnson said. “The young man came up onto the porch and had him upside down, and dropped him on the porch.”
Johnson was mystified at this show of disrespect. The USPS box containing Moffet’s ashes was clearly marked in orange, with large capital letters: “Cremated Remains.” The box was shipped Priority Mail Express, which guarantees next-day to two days at a flat rate, and was designated specifically for cremated remains.
USPS tracking history for Moffet’s ashes showed it was taken into the New York facility on May 16, was in transit on May 17, and was in a Wisconsin distribution center on May 18-19. The box tracking number showed that it arrived in the Zanesville post office on May 19.
“The Postal Service apologizes to Ms. Johnson for the concern she and her family have experienced during this difficult time,” a USPS spokesperson said in an email statement. “The package was misrouted, recovered, and delivered two days after the guaranteed delivery date.”
The representative for the postal service added that local management would be in touch with Johnson “to express our condolences and discuss any issues she has with delivery of the cremains.”