It's devastating enough to lose a loved one in a car crash. But the family of Jared McPherson didn't expect to have their trauma compounded when they went to pay their respects at the crash site. "I looked down and [his fiancee] was holding part of a skull, and I picked up a hand," McPherson's sister, Karissa McPherson, tells KSDK, revealing the horrifying discovery they made on the stretch of Interstate 255 near Collinsville, Ill., where Jared McPherson's car crashed more than a week ago. Jared had been driving with a co-worker when his truck went off the road and went up in flames, killing him. It was his father, Mike, who got the phone call from someone at the St. Clair County Coroner's office, who Mike says initially assured him, "Well, first of all everything's fine."
It obviously was not, and it got worse from there. First the family was told there was "absolutely nothing left" of Jared, Karissa tells KSDK. Then, after she and Candice, Jared's fiancee, made their gruesome find at the crash site—"we just wanted to be where he was ... the last time he was alive," Karissa tells the station—Mike says he was told by the coroner's office that the body parts may have been left behind in error after the fire was put out. "When they take down that tape, it's their job to take care of the site and they did not do their job," Mike says. "I buried my son … but I didn't bury all of him." He adds that the coroner's office now won't call him back (KSDK also "tried for days" to get a comment). "I just hope no one else has to ever feel what we felt or see what we saw," Karissa says. (Coroners in New York aren't obligated to return all of a loved one's body parts.)