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Urn found on beach traced to family


UPI News Service, 04/05/2012 

An Oregon funeral director said he was able to track down the family of a man whose urn was found on a beach.

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Tom Preston, the funeral director at Hughes-Ransom Mortuaries in Astoria, said a teenage boy brought him an urn he discovered wedged under a pier on a local beach and the inscription on the still-sealed urn reads "William George Kennedy, Born 1870 – Died 1925," KPTV, Portland, Ore., reported Thursday.

Preston said a previous story by KPTV on the urn brought his search for Kennedy's family to the attention of local genealogists and historians, who were able to help him find the man's granddaughter, Iris Close of British Columbia, Canada.

Close, who said her grandfather died just six months after she was born, said she never knew his ashes were missing. She said he was a farmer in Canterbury, England, in the late 1800s and moved to British Columbia after the death of his wife. She said he spent some time in Oregon and died while living in Bellingham, Wash.

Close said the ashes were last known to be kept by Kennedy's second wife.

"The last I heard -- and this was from my uncle, my dad's younger brother -- was that she kept it on her dresser in the bedroom -- his ashes," she said.

Close said she plans to bury her grandfather's ashes next to her father in Nelson, British Columbia.


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