Anonymous tip reported corpses inside Cantrell Funeral Home 45 days ago

Building owner wants to help community heal

By Shawn Ley - Reporter, Kayla Clarke

DETROIT - There are new developments in the investigation into Detroit's former Cantrell Funeral Home.

State inspectors revealed they were first alerted there could be remains inside the closed business 45 days ago, but despite that tip, the building was never thoroughly searched.

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The owner of that building, Naveed Syed, is working to help the community heal.

"We are sweeping every inch of the basement to make sure nothing is there," Syed said.

Syed gave Local 4 a tour of the 20,000-square-foot former funeral home.

"The bodies were here. We walked up here so many times, and apartments up there; we don't know what is up in the apartments," he said.

The remains of 11 infants were located last Friday and the cremains of four people were found this week.

"I hope there is nothing else here, but if I find something, it will not surprise me," he said.

Cantrell Funeral Home was under the state microscope in April when its license was suspended for mishandling bodies.

In August, a tipster told the state they would find more remains in the building. Last week, a tip directed inspectors to exactly where those bodies were hidden.

The discovery had a devastating impact on families.

"Few families, came forward, they were very unhappy," Syed said.

Syed believes the community needs to heal from how their loved ones were improperly handled at the funeral home.

He is planning an interfaith prayer breakfast with grief counselors on hand for anyone who needs help. That is scheduled for Oct. 27.

"From tragedy to triumph, we have to move on with life. Things happen and we need to live through it," Syed said.

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