2 seek to bar disinterring of son's body

December 31, 1991|By Sheridan Lyons | Sheridan Lyons,Baltimore County Bureau of The Sun

Two Owings Mills parents want the Baltimore County Circuit Court to stop their daughter-in-law from disinterring their son's body from Beth El Memorial Park, saying she agreed to his burial there until "a falling out" over a life insurance policy.

The daughter-in-law, Ruby L. Silver of Lawrenceville, Ga., could not be reached for comment yesterday. But in an Oct. 25 application to the Baltimore County state's attorney's office for authorization to move the body, she wrote, "I currently own two lots here [in Baltimore County] at Holly Hills and wish to have my husband buried where we can both be together."

Martin A. Silver, 55, died July 3 in Georgia. According to the lawsuit by Joseph M. and Lillian L. Silver of Sienna Court, their son was Jewish and his wife was not, but she agreed to his burial at the Jewish cemetery on Liberty Road, where the elder Silvers have four lots. Gilbert Kleiner, executive director for Beth El Congregation, said only Jews may be buried at the cemetery.

Mr. Silver was buried July 6. On Dec. 9, his parents received a note from Ruby Silver saying only: "This is to inform you that pursuant to approval received by me from the state's attorney's office, I have made arrangements to have Marty disinterred and reinterred in another cemetery of my choice," according to the suit.

She had consented to the burial at Beth El, "and she should not now be permitted to disturb the quiet of his grave and to remove his remains as she proposes to do," said the suit, which was filed Friday.

The elder Silvers allege "that Ruby's efforts to open Martin's grave and remove his remains [result from] a falling out between her and Joseph regarding the proceeds of an insurance policy on Martin's life, of which Joseph was the sole beneficiary."

Also named as a defendant is the Hartley Miller Funeral Homes, in the 7500 block of Harford Road. A spokeswoman there, funeral director Jody Miskimon, said the home was not aware of the lawsuit.

"We weren't really directly involved," she said.

In their suit, the parents ask the court to forbid removal of their son's body from Beth El.

Deputy State's Attorney Sue A. Schenning, who signed the authorization, said the office receives "more than a few" requests each year for permission to exhume a body and move it to another gravesite. These usually are granted if a few conditions are met, she said, and most appear to result from families being distraught when the initial decision was made.

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