‘It’s Pure Evil’: Officials Find More Than 115 Bodies Inadequately Stored at Colorado Funeral Home, Describe It as a ‘Hazardous Scene’

More than 100 bodies were found at a Colorado funeral home that was “improperly” storing bodies, causing an overwhelming odor in the community.

According to a document obtained by KUSA, someone reported an “abhorrent smell” coming from the Return to Nature Funeral Home’s Penrose, Colorado, location last Tuesday, Oct. 3. This led to the Office of Funeral Home and Crematory Registration reaching out to the owner, identified as John Hallford, the next day. 

Officials Found More Than 115 Bodies At Colorado Funeral Home
Officials responded to Return to Nature Funeral Home In Colorado following reports of a foul odor. (Photo: 9News/Youtube screenshot)

During the conversation with the program director, Hallford said that he “practices taxidermy” and “he has a problem at the Penrose property,” the document stated. Additional details on those statements were not included. Hallford also gave officials the green light for an inspection at the property.

Trending Today:

Per the document, authorities found human remains that were not adequately stored when they responded to the scene. It also says the owner was trying to conceal the remains. KUSA reported that over 115 bodies were discovered, and the Department of Regulatory Agencies summarily suspended the business on Thursday. Now, it’s under investigation by local and federal law enforcement. 

Local officials described the property as a “hazardous scene,” with Fremont County Coroner Randy Keller saying they removed the unidentified bodies from the facility, KKTV reported. The county sheriff’s office urged people who used the home’s services to contact them as it could take months to identify the remains.

“This is going to be a very, very lengthy process,” Keller said, per the outlet. “The loved ones at this facility will be treated with the utmost care and respect.”

According to the reports, the facility was also hit with a cease and desist after officials learned that it was acting without proper registration, which expired last November. There have been no arrests connected to this incident. 

Return to Nature Funeral Home offers clients green burials where “no chemicals, metal, or unnatural materials” are used, its website says. Many families who turned to the funeral home for their services have created a support group online during this time of uncertainty. 

“The thought that anybody could take advantage of people that are at their most vulnerable … There’s no excuse for it,” said Anna Davisson, whose late brother-in-law was sent to the funeral home in August, Fox 21 News reported. 

“It’s pure evil,” she added. “I don’t know how else to look at it.”

Read the original story here.

Back to top