The Jackson County Commissioners will consider cremation of a Jackson County resident who passed away over a year ago, and consider other items on the consent agenda during their regular meeting to be held 9 a.m. Monday, July 28, in the Commissioners Office of the County Courthouse.
During the meeting, Commissioners will consider to authorize the cremation of Justine Morehouse, age 74, who passed away on May 16, 2013 in Altus, whose body was unclaimed and has been at the Oklahoma City Medical Examiner’s office since her death, all in accordance with 56 Oklahoma Statute § 31 and § 54, and 63 Oklahoma Statute § 1-328 and 1-329.1
According the District Attorney, John Wampler, those statutes specify that Commissioners are responsible for taking care specify burial of “poor persons.”
“It is very seldom that they have to do anything with it any more,” Wampler said. “When the individual died her body was take to the Medical Examiner’s Office in Tulsa, because no one was sure why she passed away. As an unexplained death ME performs an autopsy. No family members claimed the body. When that happens, it falls back upon the county where the person passed away to make arrangements to either bury or cremate the remains of that person. It’s a very rare thing. I’ve been here 24 years and if this situation has come up before, I don’t remember. “
Commissioners will then consider to authorize Lowell-Tims Funeral Home to transport the body of Justine Morehouse from the Oklahoma City Medical Examiner’s office to Altus and to perform cremation services for the consideration in the amount of $200.
Other items to be considered during the meeting include last meeting’s minutes, reports, officer reports, and blanket purchase orders. They will also consider appropriations for the month of July 2014.
Commissioners will also consider a bid offer for Commissioners’ Sale by Jackson County Treasurer, Renee Howard on property acquired at resale, 612 W. Liveoak.
After new business and approval of claims, the meeting will adjourn.