|Monday, July 8
Williams' body already frozen; daughter fighting
ESPN.com news services
HERNANDO, Fla. -- Ted Williams' estate will ask a judge to decide if the baseball great's body should be cremated or frozen, a move to try to resolve a family feud over the remains.
Al Cassidy, the executor of the estate, will file Williams' will in state court on Tuesday or Wednesday and ask the judge to rule on the issue, John Heer, a lawyer for Williams' oldest daughter, said Monday. Heer contends Williams wanted to be cremated.
The daughter, Bobby-Jo Ferrell, has accused her half brother, John Henry Williams, of moving their father's body from a Florida funeral home to Alcor Life Extension Foundation, where bodies are frozen.
She says John Henry Williams wants to preserve their father's DNA, perhaps to sell it in the future. The brother has not returned repeated calls seeking comment.
Ferrell plans to ''rescue'' her father's body from the cryonics company in Scottsdale, Ariz. She says the body already is frozen. Both the Boston Globe and Boston Herald are reporting that the body is frozen as well.
''My dad's in a metal tube, on his head, so frozen that if I touched him it would crack him because of the warmth from my fingertips,'' Ferrell told Boston's WBZ-TV. ''It makes me so sick.''
The Herald, citing an unnamed source, said Williams may have agreed to being frozen. "It wouldn't surprise me if Ted was deep into this. Ted loved science. Ted Williams was not a stupid man. If he made up his mind about something he did it and (expletive) everyone else," The Herald quoted the unnamed source as saying. "To blame it all on John Henry is not fair. Ted loved John Henry.''
Karla Steen, a spokeswoman for Alcor, would not confirm Monday that Williams' body is at the facility. Ferrell has said she was told by the funeral home that the body was taken to Arizona.
Ferrell did not return several phone messages Monday and no one answered the door at her house. Bill Boyles and Pam Price, attorneys for the estate's executor, also did not return a phone message.
Ted Williams, the last major league hitter to bat better than .400 in a season, died Friday at age 83.
No funeral will be held, according to the wishes of the former Boston Red Sox slugger. Two memorial services are planned on July 22 at Fenway Park.
George Hommell, a fishing buddy of Ted Williams, said it was a shame family members are fighting over the body.
''Something like this makes you sick to your stomach,'' he said.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.