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Casey Kasem's remains flown to Canada, funeral director says

By Jane Caffrey and Alan Duke, CNN
updated 7:56 AM EDT, Wed July 23, 2014
Casey Kasem, who entertained radio listeners for almost four decades as the host of countdown shows such as "American Top 40" and "Casey's Top 40," died early Sunday, June 15, according to a Facebook post from his daughter Kerri Kasem. Casey Kasem, who entertained radio listeners for almost four decades as the host of countdown shows such as "American Top 40" and "Casey's Top 40," died early Sunday, June 15, according to a Facebook post from his daughter Kerri Kasem.
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Legendary DJ Casey Kasem
Legendary DJ Casey Kasem
Legendary DJ Casey Kasem
Legendary DJ Casey Kasem
Legendary DJ Casey Kasem
Legendary DJ Casey Kasem
Legendary DJ Casey Kasem
Legendary DJ Casey Kasem
Legendary DJ Casey Kasem
Legendary DJ Casey Kasem
Legendary DJ Casey Kasem
Legendary DJ Casey Kasem
Legendary DJ Casey Kasem
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STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • A Washington funeral director says he sent Kasem's remains to Canada last week
  • Kasem's wife, Jean, requested the body be flown to Montreal, the funeral director says
  • Kasem's daughter Kerri accuses her stepmother of abusing her elderly father
  • Casey Kasem was 82 when he died in Washington state last month

Los Angeles (CNN) -- Casey Kasem's body was flown to Canada a month after he died, a funeral home director told CNN Tuesday.

Kasem's corpse was taken from a Washington state funeral home last week before the radio icon's daughter could enforce a court order against it being removed, according to the director of Tacoma's Gaffney Funeral Home.

A lawyer delivered the order a day after the body was sent out of the country, Corey Gaffney said.

"I disclosed to her attorney that the body was no longer in our care," Gaffney said.

Kasem's wife, Jean Kasem, said she has been "blackmailed" by her husband's children for 35 years.

"This is a shakedown and I will not negotiate with terrorists," she told CNN. "I will not give in to their blackmail and attacks."

Casey Kasem's son speaks out
Casey Kasem: A legendary voice in radio

Casey Kasem's body is missing, daughter says

Daughter Kerri Kasem accuses her stepmother of abusing her elderly father and contributing to his death by taking him from a Santa Monica, California, care facility in May and relocating him to Washington.

Santa Monica Police have "an open and ongoing investigation" into the elder abuse allegation, Sgt. Rudy Camarena said last week.

Kasem, who entertained radio listeners for almost four decades as the host of countdown shows such as "American Top 40" and "Casey's Top 40," died in a hospital in Gig Harbor, Washington, on June 15. He was 82.

Gaffney said Kasem was kept in his funeral home until he was instructed by Jean Kasem to send it to Montreal last week.

"I took Casey to the airport myself, oversaw every detail myself from the moment we brought him into care," Gaffney said. He tracked its arrival in Montreal, he said.

The death certificate listed Urgel Bourgie, a funeral and cemetery business in Montreal, as the planned destination, he said. CNN has not independently confirmed the details of the death certificate or the arrival of the remains at the Montreal funeral home.

Danny Deraney, a representative for Kerri Kasem, said Jean Kasem has the legal right to control her late husband's remains. "The bottom line is that they want to know where he'll be buried," Deraney said. "I think they have that right."

Kerri Kasem is pushing for a new law in California to give adult children visitation rights with their aging or incapacitated parents.

"There are so many people dealing with the same situation my family is dealing with, and we are receiving so many letters and e-mails," she said in a posting on her Facebook page Tuesday.

Casey Kasem tributes: 'Keep reaching for the stars'

Casey Kasem's global reach: long-distance dedications

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