All bodies removed by state from unlicensed crematorium in Ypsilanti

An unregistered Ypsilanti funeral home has been shut down and emptied of bodies by the state's licensing department it announced Thursday.

Licensing and Regulatory Affairs said all of the bodies have now been either cremated or removed from Tri-County Cremation Services, L.L.C.’s crematory facility located at 1106 E. Michigan Avenue.

"This was no small feat and involved the cooperation and participation of multiple licensed funeral establishments, county medical examiners, and the State Vital Records Office, all coordinated by LARA with the assistance of the Department of Attorney General, in a matter of days," according to a state release. "LARA and the Department of Attorney General are grateful for the prompt and efficient assistance of those organizations and individuals in authorizing, overseeing, and achieving the final disposition of so many loved ones."

The state first began its administrative action against Tri-County Cremation Services, L.L.C. on June 4.

On June 16, 2021, LARA also began an investigation under the Occupational Code against Comfort Cremation Services LLC, an entity on file with a registered office located at 101 W. Big Beaver Rd., Ste. 1400, in Troy, and its members, O’Neil Swanson, also known as O’Neil D. Swanson, II, and George A. Drosis, the state said.

According to the release, investigations concerning both situations remain ongoing.

On June 11, O’Neil Swanson and Dianne E. Swanson were ordered by the Ingham County Circuit Court to stop violating a cease and desist order issued by LARA on June 4, 2021, prohibiting them and Tri-County Cremation Services, L.L.C., under their ownership and operation, from activities that require a crematory registration under the Cemetery Regulation Act.

On June 17, O’Neil Swanson, Dianne Swanson, and Comfort Cremation Services, LLC were ordered by the Washtenaw County Circuit Court, in a separate civil proceeding commenced by Ypsilanti Township, to refrain from participating in the removal of human remains from the crematory facility.

In 2019, O’Neil Swanson was convicted of conversion of funds under the Prepaid Funeral and Cemetery Sales Act. In 2018, his mortuary science license and the mortuary science establishment license previously held by Swanson’s Funeral Home, Inc. in Flint were revoked based on violations of the Occupational Code and other health and safety laws.