Couple Claims Wrong Remains Buried in Alleged Hospital Mix-Up

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    NEWSLETTERS

    A Brooklyn couple who lost their baby four months into their pregnancy says a hospital mix-up resulted in the cremation of a baby that was not theirs. Michael George reports. (Published Saturday, Mar 22, 2014)

    A couple who lost their baby four months into their pregnancy says they buried the wrong remains because of a mix-up at a Brooklyn hospital. 

    William Werner and Abaline Nieves are suing Maimonides Medical Center for mental anguish and emotional distress.

    The couple says they were devastated when they lost their baby, and even though he died before he was born, they still felt like parents.

    "We held him, had him baptized and everything," said Werner. 

    They had the baby's ashes cremated and had a ceremony at a family grave. Then, a month later, the couple got a call asking them to come back to the hospital. They said they were told they had been given the wrong remains by accident.

    "How do you apologize for something like that?" said Werner. "They're like, 'We made a mistake.' How is that an apology?"

    Nieves said, "I still can't wrap my head around it, and they still can't answer us why or how." 

    Werner and Nieves say they don't know whose remains they were given, and have now had to say goodbye to their son for a second time. 

    "We went to the morgue to pick up our son and Abby viewed him. I couldn't do it," said Werner.

    "I couldn't trust the hospital, so I felt I owed my son to ensure we had him this time around," Nieves said. "No one should have to lose a child, but then to not be able to properly bury or scatter the ashes of the cremation, that's just wrong." 

    A Maimonides Medical Center representative said the hospital is not allowed to comment on any of the couple's claims due to health privacy laws.