Two Whistleblowers Report Mistreatment of Veterans Remains

On Sunday April 5th, the Washington Post reported that Steven Napper and Robert Ranghelli blew the whistle on the unethical and unsanitary conditions at the National Funeral Home.  Napper and Ranghelli reported that bodies destined for burial at Arlington National Cemetery were left, sometimes for months, on unrefrigerated racks because coolers were full and the company did not want to spend money on additional coolers.  They stated that the facility stored as many as 200 bodies in unrefrigerated areas, including the garage, and that the bodies, sometimes fully exposed, leaked fluids on the floor.  Families of the deceased are calling for an investigation into the funeral home’s actions.  A letter from the parent company, Service Corporation International, denies all allegations and insists that their facilities are run according to regulations.

While the allegations are still pending further investigation, the reports from the whistleblowers highlight how courageous employees can expose potentially illegal and unethical conduct.  Please read the articles and watch the videos linked below for more information on the case.  

“Family Asks Fairfax Prosecutor to Investigate Funeral Home” Washington Post, April 7, 2009 (PDF Copy)

“’I Never Could Have Imagined’: Dignity Was Denied the Dead as Bodies Were Stored and Handled Using ‘Disturbing’ Methods, Area Funeral Home Workers Say” Washington Post, April 5, 2009 (PDF Copy)

“Va funeral home accused of atrocious conditions” Washington Post, April 5, 2009 (PDF Copy)


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