MEMPHIS, Tennessee (WMC) --The ashes had been sitting in the same spot on the mantle for more than three years, until a family found out they had the wrong person.
Dinetta Hodges died November 22, 2009 at just 52 years old.
"She was fun. She was outgoing," said daughter Kimberly Noel. "We called her D.D."
Noel said her mom's wishes were to be cremated, and her ashes spread in the ocean.
The family had been planning a cruise to fulfill those wishes, until Noel's daughter opened the urn for the first time ever and found a tag with someone else's information inside.
These ashes belong not to D.D., but rather a complete stranger.
"It's heartbreaking," said Noel. "It took this long for us to come to grips with losing our mom. It's almost like she's died again. Because now it's like what did they do? I'm just wondering, like, where's my mom?"
Tennessee Crematory said it has documented proof that it cremated the remains properly, and that J E Funeral Home picked up Hodges' ashes January 18, 2010.
But the Noel's said J E Herndon had the family collect the urn and ashes the first week of January 2010.