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Mistaken identity leaves Texas man planning new burial service for mother

By Amanda Orr

HOUSTON (Reuters) - A grieving Texas man is planning a second burial service for his mother after a mortuary mistakenly placed the wrong body in a grave on top of his father.

Mabrie Memorial Mortuary ignored warnings from Bruce Lawson that the body being buried on top of his father in the Houston National Cemetery on July 26 did not appear to be that of his mother, Edna, Lawson told a CBS affiliate in Houston on Friday.

"I said: 'It doesn't look like my mom. Do you think maybe you have the wrong body? Maybe it's someone else back there?' And she said we don't make those kind of mistakes,” Lawson told KHOU 11 News, relaying a conversation he had with a mortuary official.

Lawson said he received a call days after the burial from a mortuary employee, who told him of the mistake. Lawson went to the mortuary, where he identified his mother's body.

“I said, 'Now that’s my mother,'” Lawson said.

The mortuary confirmed in a statement it had inadvertently mistaken the body of Lawson for that of another person also left in its care, according to KHOU.

"We deeply regret that the Lawson family had to endure this temporary delay in properly transitioning their loved one," it said.

Lawson's family now faces another burial process.

“You don’t want to send the loved ones through that all over again. So what do you do?” Lawson said.

Neither Lawson nor the mortuary was immediately available for comment on Saturday.

(Reporting by Amanda Orr; Editing by Brendan O'Brien and Peter Cooney)

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