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New York Post

Son of man whose ashes were sent to Brooklyn rocker slams ‘outrageous’ mistake: ‘Shame on them’

By Khristina Narizhnaya, Natalie O'Neill,


He says this funeral home was dead wrong not to call him!

The son of a trucker whose cremated remains were mysteriously shipped to a Brooklyn indie rocker told The Post Thursday the funeral home that mailed them made an “outrageous” and “heartbreaking” mistake.

“Shame on them,” Lamont Hall, 23, said after The Post tracked him down and told him about the bizarre mix-up. “To see his ashes misplaced like that is heartbreaking.”

“That’s really shocking the way this was handled. They should have reached out,” he said.

Hall said his father, Dwight Walter, was an affable trucker who loved vintage cars and died of an illness in 2017 at age 56.

At the time, he had been living with his oldest son, Ronnie, in the East Williamsburg studio apartment where Hamilton Leithauser, lead singer of The Walkmen , received the stranger’s box of cremated remains Tuesday.
Lamont Hall is furious about how John’s Funeral Home handled his father’s ashes.
Paul Martinka

But when Leithauser called John’s Funeral Home in Brownsville to straighten things out, the owner allegedly told him the ashes were his problem — a move that Hall called wildly irresponsible and cold-hearted.

“For the funeral home to turn their left cheek and say, ‘That’s not our problem,’ is outrageous,” he said. “That’s y’all’s job. You’re supposed to treat that with professionalism.”

After his father’s death, Hall said, he and his brother picked out an urn to honor their beloved pop and that “it hurts” to know the ashes were neglected.
Hall’s father’s ashes were sent to Hamilton Leithauser, lead vocalist of The Walkmen.
Stephen Yang

“For all these years, I thought my father was safe and sound. Come to find out … he’s been shipped around and neglected by the funeral home that said they were gonna take care of him,” he said. “I’m at a loss for words.”

“It’s bringing [emotions] back up,” he said. “These are scars from 2017 that we have to reopen because the funeral home has just been neglectful.”

John’s Funeral Home owner John Neman sent a worker to retrieve Walter’s remains from Leithauser after receiving a call from The Post Wednesday — and Hall now plans to retrieve his dad’s remains, he said.

Neman didn’t return a call Thursday.

The cardboard box containing the ashes was inexplicably marked “Walter John” and dated Oct. 17, 2017. The package was addressed to the “current resident” of the home and apparently intended for Walter’s eldest son, Ronnie, who moved out years ago.
A worker from John’s Funeral Home eventually picked up the ashes it mistakenly sent to the musician’s home.
Stephen Yang

Neman told The Post Wednesday he shipped Walter’s remains to the address because nobody came to claim them — but he hadn’t contacted Hall as of Thursday.

It wasn’t immediately clear why the ashes weren’t picked up.

“I thought everything went smoothly after the funeral. My brother took care of everything,” said Hall.
Leithauser sings in the popular indie-punk band The Walkmen.
Jason Kempin

Hall was grateful that Leithauser tweeted about the eerie delivery , which led to The Post’s story Wednesday — ultimately solving the mystery and giving him some closure, he said.

“I would like to thank the guy who made this public, we need more kind-hearted people like that,” he said.

“We would have still been in the dark, thinking our father was safe, while he was being shipped around like a package.”

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