Heinz Has License Taken, More Cases of Mixed Up Cremains Reported

By Benjamin Cox on October 7, 2023 at 7:12am

More information was released on Friday about the alleged mishandling of cremains and the deceased at a Macoupin County Funeral Home.

Sangamon County Coroner Jim Allmon revealed last Friday in a joint press conference with Sangamon County Sheriff Jack Campbell that Heinz Funeral Home & Family Care Cremations out of Carlinville had mishandled the deceased of at least 4 Sangamon County residents. The reports have caused a multi-jurisdiction investigation involving multiple families.

Morgan County Coroner Marcy Patterson revealed on Monday that two cases of alleged mishandled cremations had involved Morgan County residents.

Allmon says he’s fielded hundreds of phone calls at his office since last Friday: “Since then, we’ve recovered approximately 40 sets of cremains from Heinz Funeral Home, and we have been in receipt of dozens of cremains from families that have notified us and we have verified that they have the wrong cremains.”

Allmon says they now have to track down numbers at the crematory to properly identify the mishandled cremains and match them up with the proper person: “The identification process when it comes to cremains is done by looking at a 4 or 5-digit pin on the medallion that’s associated with the cremains. If that pin number matches the number at the crematory, then that is the identification they are correctly utilizing to identify those cremains. If it does not match, then that number will come back to another individual. Then, that’s where we have taken over possession of the cremains and are trying to contact the correct family that those cremains belong to.”

Allmon says he’s received word of the first actions by the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation this week about the issues with Heinz Funeral Home and Funeral Director August Heinz: “We were notified [Thursday] that the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation revoked [August Heinz’s] funeral director’s license. I totally support that decision, and I am working with local law enforcement agencies from multiple jurisdictions to assist them with any criminal culpability that may come from anything that he has done. I’m going to refer all questions in reference to that to those investigating the criminal matters.”

Allmon says his office is also working with he Illinois Department of Public Health, Vital Records Division to file and correct/amend death certificates when appropriate. It remains unclear as to whether or not any criminal charges will be levied against Heinz or others involved with the funeral home, with the investigation still ongoing. Allmon says he has spoken briefly with August Heinz over the phone for direct questions only. Heinz Family Funeral Home in Carlinville has not responded to any requests for comment by members of the Springfield media.

Allmon encourages people to call their local county coroner’s office if they’ve had any prior dealings with Heinz Funeral Home/Family Care Cremations.