Husband's cremated remains got lost in mail, but story has a twist
A suburban family reached out to network CBS 2 after shipping the remains of their beloved dad and husband through the mail.
You can likely guess where this is all going, but there was a surprising twist along the way.
Mark Colby loved jazz. He spent decades performing and teaching others to play.
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Even more importantly, Mr Colby was a husband, father, grandfather and friend.
"It's no small thing to become a widow," his wife, Mary Colby, told CBS 2's Tim McNicholas. "People telling me stories – he changed their lives."
Mark and Mary Colby were married for 44 years, until cancer took Mark Colby's life on August 31.
"This whole thing has been quite the whirlwind," said Mrs Colby.
"This whole thing" refers to the shipping of her husband's remains. She sent three separate urns to Mark's son in Georgia, a sister in Florida, and his best friend since kindergarten in New York.
A US Postal Service video boasts the Post Office is your only choice to ship cremains, ending with, "Trust the USPS."
Well, despite those promises, the urn headed to Mr Colby's hometown of New York City got lost.
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"It's not just a package," said Mrs Colby. "There's a reason it's supposed to have special handling."
Mrs Colby's receipt for the missing urn shows she paid $50 to get that precious package to New York by midday the next day. There is even a money-back guarantee.
As McNicholas struggled to chat with Mrs Colby via Zoom with the internet connection going unstable, she got a welcome message loud and clear.
"What's that? It just got to New York?" Mrs Colby said. Addressing McNicholas, she continued: "They were just calling me to tell me that it just got to New York. So maybe our story is ending before it even got started."
We let Mrs Colby investigate and continued our interview the next day.
"I suppose you want to begin with the really good news," she said that next day. "The really wonderful news is that Mark's remains and urn were delivered."
A widow's relief – four days late, but her husband's remains did arrive. Now, she wants to get the word out, warning other families and letting people know the Post Office video where they claim they will "provide you with world-class customer service" is not reflected in reality.
"People seemed brusque and abrupt," Mrs Colby said. "It wasn't an envelope or box with toys. It was my husband's remains. The woman at the Post Office was flat-out rude."
Now, Mrs Colby's day-long search for a package is over. She can return to more important things, such as cherishing the memories of her husband.
"I miss him so terribly, as do many," she said.
The USPS apologised for the delay, but never explained why it took so long for the urn to arrive in New York.