Flier: TSA Screener Spilled Grandpa's Ashes

He says agent laughed as he picked up remains
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 27, 2012 2:31 AM CDT
Flier: TSA Screener Spilled Grandpa's Ashes
"Any human remains in your baggage today, sir?"   (Getty Images)

(Newser) – Death offers no escape from shabby treatment by TSA agents, an Indianapolis man warns. John Gross, 30, says he was on his way home from Florida with his grandfather's cremated remains when an agent at Orlando airport searching his carry-on bag twisted open the jar and accidentally spilled at least a quarter of its contents on the floor. The agent laughed as Gross scrambled to pick bone fragments off the floor while passengers waiting for their bags were stalled behind him, said the angry traveler. "I didn't want to cause a scene because I didn't want them to throw me off my flight or put me on the no-fly list," he says. "It didn't really hit me until I got on the plane."

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Gross had been given the ashes of his grandfather, a lifelong Cubs fan who died in 2002, by an aunt and uncle he had been visiting. "My grandpa I'm sure is up there in heaven laughing about this. I'm wondering who stepped in his ashes and where they are now. Maybe a little bit made it to the Cubs' stadium," Gross tells the Orlando Sentinel. "You've got to laugh about it but when you get down to it, it's not a laughing matter." A TSA spokeswoman says the incident is being investigated, but an initial review has concluded that "the circumstances as described in some reports are inconsistent with what we believe transpired." (Read more Transportation Security Administration stories.)

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