COLUMBUS, Ohio — The body of a 14-month-old boy was cremated by mistake in a morgue mix-up, leaving distraught family members critical of the coroner, who has apologized, placed an employee on leave, and begun making procedural changes.
An initial review indicated the body of Jaylen Talley was released to the wrong funeral home because a forensic technician did not follow proper procedures, which include opening the body bag, looking at the body, and matching up paperwork with toe and ankle tags, Franklin County coroner Jan Gorniak said.
The cause of death is still pending for Jaylen, whose family said he died May 18 after suffering breathing difficulties since birth. The body was picked up from the morgue the following day and cremated in place of a dead 22-day-old boy whose family wanted cremation.
“They really just hurt my son. They really just put him in some fire and burned my son,’’ Jaylen’s mother, Jamere Sydnor, told WSYX-TV. “It’s like he got killed twice.’’