A gay man is suing a funeral home in Mississippi, alleging that it refused to cremate his husband because it did not “deal with their kind.”
John “Jack” Zawadski, 82, and his nephew filed a lawsuit against the Picayune Funeral Home’s owners, seeking damages.
The lawsuit accuses them of backing out of a verbal agreement to provide final services for Zawadski’s husband, Robert Huskey, in May 2016, after discovering he was gay.
The funeral home denied all the claims in a response to the lawsuit.
“I felt as if all the air had been knocked out of me,” Zawadski said in a statement. “Bob was my life, and we had always felt so welcome in this community. And then, at a moment of such personal pain and loss, to have someone do what they did to me, to us, to Bob, I just couldn’t believe it. No one should be put through what we were put through.”
Zawadski and Huskey met in 1965 in California. They moved around the country, teaching special education classes and running an apple orchard, before retiring in Picayune, Mississippi in 1997, for the friendly neighbors and warm climate, the lawsuit states. They finally married in July 2015, weeks after the Supreme Court legalized same-sex marriage settled.