Officials in Norway are deciding on whether to grant the request of Casey Kasem’s wife to bury his body in Oslo in the face of protests from his children. Kasem’s children from his first wife are contesting Jean Kasem’s claim that he wanted to be buried in Norway, saying that the prominent radio DJ and television host had always wanted to be buried in California, where he lived for 53 years of his life.
A Norwegian government official told NBC News that they had recently received a letter from Kasem’s children and friends asking them not to grant the request. Oslo’s Managing Director of Funeral Service Wenche Elizabeth Madsen Eriksson said that the letter has prompted them to consult attorneys about the matter. She said that the letter claims that Kasem had wanted to be buried in Forest Lawn in Glendale and that Jean did not allow Kasem’s children to visit him for a year before his death. They reportedly claimed that Jean had no Norwegian ancestry and that she wasn’t planning to move to the country.
Eriksson confirmed that Kasem’s remains had arrived in Oslo. “Even if the reason [Jean Kasem] gave us wasn’t right, we don’t necessarily have to reject it. Casey Kasem can still be buried in Norway. But we must consider the whole situation.”
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The burial controversy follows reports that Kasem was moved by his wife from Berkley East Convalescent Hospital several times to Las Vegas and Seattle against doctor’s orders. In June, Kasem’s daughter Kerri was appointed with conservatorship of her father by a court and she was able to move him to Washington’s St. Anthony Hospital, where he died on June 15. However, Jean reportedly claimed his remains and sent them to a funeral home for autopsy, where they stayed for a month before she moved them to Montreal, Canada before Kasem’s children could request for their own autopsy.
“[Jean is] hiding the body away from the authorities, family and friends,” said a representative of Kerri’s.