Tsarnaev Body: Cambridge Refuse To Bury Boston Bomber; Will Tamerlan Tsarnaev Be Buried In Russia?

By Staff Reporter on May 6, 2013 1:33 PM EDT

Tamerlan Tsarnaev and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev
Tamerlan Tsarnaev, left, and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, right, are pictured in this combination photo. (Photo: Reuters)

Tamerlan Tsarnaev's body is without a grave as cemeteries in the Boston bomber's hometown of Cambridge refuse to accept it on Sunday.

While Boston continues to cope with the horrifying Boston Marathon bombing tragedy that killed three victims and injured more than 260, Cambridge city manager Robert Healy declared that the Tamerlan Tsarnaev body is not welcome in its cemeteries.

"I have determined that it is not in the best interest of peace within the city to execute a cemetery deed for a plot within the Cambridge Cemetery for the body of Tamerlan Tsarnaev," Healey said.

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Tamerlan Tsarnaev's uncle Ruslan Tsarni insists that a dead person must be buried. Thankfully, at least one funeral home, the Graham Putnam & Mahoney Funeral Parlor, shares the belief that everyone deserves a dignified burial. Funeral director Peter Stefan has accepted the task of handling the service. Ruslan Tsarni and three friends met with Stefan to wash and shroud Tsarnaev's body in accordance with Muslim tradition.

However, Stefan faces challenges as cemeteries turn down the Tsarnaev body. In addition, dozens of protesters have gathered outside Stefan's Worcester, Massachusetts, business.

"My problem here is trying to find a gravesite. A lot of people don't want to do it. They don't want to be involved with this," Peter Stefan said. "I keep bringing up the point of Lee Harvey Oswald, Timothy McVeigh or Ted Bundy. Somebody had to do those, too."

Beyond cemeteries in Massachusetts, locations in New Jersey and Connecticut have turned down Stefan as well.

Amid the burial dilemma of Tsarnaev's body, the Boston bomber's mother expressed her desire for her son's body to be sent home to Russia. According to the Boston Herald, funeral director Peter Stefan's funeral home received a call from Zubeidat Tsarnaeva.

"The woman was in tears," Stefan said. "She just said, 'It would be nice if you could get him home.' She'd love to have him back there, obviously. Regardless of what he did, she's still his mother. What are you going to say to her? What can you say?"

While it is unclear what will happen to Tamerlan Tsarnaev's body, funeral director Peter Stefan is fully prepared to wait it out before the situation unfolds. The proper treatment of Tamerlan Tsarnaev's body is Stefan's biggest concern.

"I have refrigeration. I can hold him for a long time," Stefan said. "It'd be a great idea if we could send him to Russia, but I would have to have something from the State Department. This is a national security situation. We can't just send a body over like we're dumping it."

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