Grandmother's Remains, Lost in the Mail, Finally Delivered

Package lost between Phoenix and Chicago

By Kate Allt and Kimi Podgorski
|  Thursday, Jul 29, 2010  |  Updated 9:24 PM CDT
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The family of 89-year-old Mabel Bink is still searching for closure after the cremated remains of the Roseland native was somehow lost in the process of being shipped from Arizona to Chicago.

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The ashes of 89-year-old Mabel Bink have been returned to her family. 

Postal Service officials discovered the package at an Elk Grove Village processing plant on Thursday afternoon, according the Chicago Tribune.

"How it got lost is something we're still trying to solve," said Mark Reynolds, spokesman for the U.S. Postal Service in Chicago, the paper reports.

On Wednesday, the family members of Mabel Bink were still searching for closure after the cremated remains of the Roseland native were somehow lost in the process of being shipped from Arizona to Chicago.

Bink died of congestive heart failure on June 18 and insisted on cremation in order to cut costs of shipping her body from Phoenix to Chicago, where her family lives, the Chicago Tribune reported.

“It’s like it’s in limbo,” Bink’s granddaughter Beth Biancalana told the paper. “I feel like I’ve had no closure in all of this.”

Bink’s family ordered a vault to bury the ashes in, and the order was accidentally sent to Phoenix. Biancalana’s uncle, Kenneth Bink, of Phoenix, decided to ship both the vault and the remains. Postal Service records show the package was processed, but later could not account for it.

“Everybody is still on high alert for it,” Regina Armstrong of the Postal Service’s consumer affairs office said a day earlier.  "My heart goes out to the family. I wish they could have some closure.”

Bink’s memorial took place as scheduled July 23, but without her remains. As if that weren’t enough, the weekend’s severe storms prevented many of the family members, including Biancalana, from attending the service. 

The postal service is investigating why the package was not properly tracked in the first place and is taking measures to prevent this from occurring again in the future. 

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