Troubleshooter: Headstone delay

ABC11 Eyewitness News I-Team Troubleshooter Diane Wilson

February 21, 2011 5:10:00 PM PST
A grieving Triangle family says they were kept waiting more than a year for closure.Wanda McClain-Daye says she was promised a completion date of six to eight weeks for a headstone for her late mother. But it turned into more than a year and a half of waiting.

McClain-Daye says they would count the trees along the cemetery road to figure out where their mother was buried.

"We think she's between tree three and four," she said.

McClain-Daye's mother passed away and has been buried since May of 2009. She ordered a marker for her mom's grave from J&P Memorials in June of 2009.

McClain-Daye says she paid a $1,000 deposit, with the remaining $600 due when the marker was complete.

She says she waited, and never heard anything from J&P Memorials, so she contacted the owner in December of 2009.

"I was like her birthday is coming and he kept saying it wasn't in, and then he said the company he was dealing with moved, and they lost her paperwork, and I was willing let's start over and he said no, he was going to handle it and it was never resolved," McClain-Daye explained.

She says after that she continued to hear excuses.

"He said you still owe me a payment, and I told him my final payment was due upon completion, you haven't shown me completion yet - me providing the money was no problem," McClain-Daye said.

After a year of waiting, McClain-Daye got word her mom's marker was done.

"When he finally presented the product to me it wasn't what we ordered," she said. "The praying hands and picture, and none of it was on there."

McClain-Daye then turned to ABC11 Eyewitness News I-Team Troubleshooter for help.

ABC11 got in touch with the owner of J&P Memorials. He said he just needed to order the praying hands, which would be in within three weeks.

Instead, it took three months, but finally J&P Memorials finished the marker.

ABC11 was there when the owner delivered it to the cemetery. He didn't have much to say, except, "I'm glad it's over."

McClain-Daye agrees.

"I will come out here and be thankful," she said. "I'm sure my siblings will come out and we will be able to tell mama we finally completed it."

Crews put in the marker and McClain-Daye says she is finally able to put flowers at her mother's gravesite and see the marker she's been waiting since 2009 for.

"I'm just glad it's over, I thank you very much for your hard work and you sticking with me," she said.

The owner of J&P Memorials said that one of the reasons it took so long was because McClain-Daye still owed money on the marker.

McClain-Daye says that's simply not true, the contract states she makes the final payment when the marker was complete. When it was done, she did make the final payment.

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