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Parents won't seek to have Gary Coleman's remains taken to Chicago

By Alan Duke, CNN
  • NEW: Sue and Willie Coleman reviewed Coleman's will before making decision
  • NEW: Coleman's ex-wife, Shannon Price, will make funeral arrangements
  • Coleman's remains currently at Sandy, Utah, mortuary
  • Actor died of brain hemorrhage after fall at home
  • Price had legal authority to remove life support

(CNN) -- Gary Coleman's parents have dropped their bid to have the late actor's body returned to Chicago for burial and will allow his ex-wife to plan the funeral, their attorney said Friday.

Sue and Willie Coleman made the decision after reviewing copies of Coleman's will and other trust documents provided by attorneys in Utah, where Coleman lived with his former wife, Shannon Price, until his death last week.

"From the start, Mr. and Mrs. Coleman's intention has been to see that Gary's wishes be honored and that his affairs be taken care of properly," attorney Frederick Jackson said in a statement. "They wanted to do things the right way, and they urge those still involved to do the same. The Colemans ask that everyone please treat Gary with respect and kindness. They feel it is time for him to find peace and let his spirit go."

The body of the 42-year-old actor, who died last Friday of a brain hemorrhage in a Provo, Utah, hospital, is now at Lake Hill Mortuary in Sandy, Utah.

The legal department at the mortuary's parent company -- Memorial Mortuaries -- told CNN it has control of Coleman's remains until the dispute between Price and Coleman's parents is settled.

Coleman and Price divorced in 2008, but they were living together in Santaquin, Utah, when he suffered the fall, which proved fatal.

Price, 24, had the legal authority to authorize his doctor to disconnect his life support, the Utah Valley Regional Medical Center in Provo said.

"Mr. Coleman had completed an Advanced Health Care Directive that granted Shannon Price permission to make medical decisions on his behalf if he was unable to do so," said the hospital statement, which Price authorized.

The document was in effect when the decision to remove Coleman from life support was made last Friday, the hospital said.

"An Advanced Health Care Directive remains in effect regardless of a patient's marital status, unless modified by the patient," the hospital statement said.

Coleman suffered a brain hemorrhage after he fell at his home on Wednesday, May 26. He died two days later, after he was removed from life support, a hospital spokeswoman said.

While he appeared "lucid and conscious" Thursday morning, his condition worsened by the afternoon, leaving him unconscious and on life support, she said.

Coleman is best known as the wisecracking youngster Arnold on TV's "Diff'rent Strokes" from the late 1970s to the mid-1980s.

"There was a touch of magic and a different stroke in Gary Coleman," said TV legend Norman Lear, who produced the show. "He was the inspiration behind his show's title."

CNN's Brittany Kaplan contributed to this report.