A local widow, Rosellen Smith, passed away May 23, 2022, at a Lansdale assisted living community. But when her next-of-kin (a cousin) was unable or unwilling to honor her burial request, Montgomery County Deputy Coroner Adam Shellenhamer had a mystery to unravel to put her at peace. Jo Ciavaglia reported his efforts in the Bucks County Courier Times.
Rosellen, who spent much of her life in North Wales, was preceded in death by her husband, George E. Smith, a decade ago.
Prior to his passing, they had purchased twin burial sites at the St. John Neumann Cemetery in Chalfont, Bucks County. He lay interred there, awaiting her accompaniment.
But with the disconnect from the last cited family survivor and no children to consult (the couple had no offspring), that information never made it to Shellenhamer’s office.
The deed to the Chalfont gravesite was found, but the coverage of the costs for its necessary opening was unresolved.
A connection between Shellenhamer and a sister in the Archdiocese of Phila., however, led to a solution: The Archdiocese, owner of St. John Newmann Cemetery, would waive the gravesite charge.
In addition, Adam Shellenhamer agreed to also negate the county’s charge for cremation.
More about this Montgomery County couple united forever is at the Bucks County Courier Times.