Boonville family wants answers after father's remains damaged

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BOONVILLE - Kennedy Sherrill was a U.S. Navy veteran who was stationed at Guantanamo Bay during the Vietnam War. He was also a double lung transplant recipient.

That's one of the reasons why his family decided to donate his body to scientific research at Wake Forest University's medical school after he passed away at the age of 66 last year. 

When the Mattox family received their father's cremated remains back from the university, they didn't expect the box and its contents to be damaged.

The box came wrapped in plastic, with punctures in the package and her father's cremation certificate, and the box containing his remains dented and partially opened. Now, Nathan Mattox wants to know why the box containing his father-in-law's remains wasn't handled with care.

"We don't want anybody to have to open the box like we did and find out that the remains of your cherished loved one were so disregarded," Mattox said.

A spokeswoman for the USPS said she doesn't know the specifics of this particular case, but unfortunately, damage does occur during processing and delivery because of the number of cases the postal service deals with every day.

Mattox said that his remains are irreplaceable. 

"There's no monetary value," Mattox said. There's nothing like that that could be placed upon that. The value of it lies within the emotional state that we're in."

Mattox said he hopes the remains of other people's loved ones will be packaged and delivered more carefully than his were.