NEW YORK >> New York University is apologizing for allowing donated bodies to wind up in mass graves meant for unclaimed and indigent bodies.
The New York Times says several bodies donated to the university for medical science were buried on Hart Island despite having signed guarantees that their remains would be cremated and the ashes disposed of in a dignified manner.
University spokeswoman Lisa Greiner says the school has no idea how many donated cadavers wound up in the mass graves. She says officials didn't know it was happening until the newspaper reported on it. She says the practice was related to confusing notification letters sent to surviving family members.
Greiner says all donated cadavers are now cremated, with the ashes returned to families or scattered in a crematory's memorial garden.
Information from: The New York Times, http://www.nytimes.com