Colorado Woman's Head: Alcor Says Money Was Never an Issue Regarding Freezing It
Since our earlier post about Alcor and its legal battle with the family of a woman whose head the company is trying to freeze, a lawyer representing Alcor got back to us and claims the company just wants to see the woman's wishes carried out.
From the sounds of the initial reports of the legal battle between the family of 71-year-old Mary Robbins and Alcor, it seemed like both parties were more interested in a $50,000 annuity that Robbins set aside to pay for her cryo-preservation than they were about her final resting place.
But Clifford Wolff, an attorney for Alcor, says the $50,000 was never an issue for Alcor and the people-freezing company only had Robbins' wishes in mind.
He also says, even if the money isn't awarded to Alcor, the company will still freeze the woman.
Arizona Coyotes vs. San Jose Sharks
TicketsTue., Nov. 1, 7:00pm
Phoenix Suns vs. Portland Trail Blazers
TicketsWed., Nov. 2, 7:00pm
Arizona Coyotes vs. Nashville Predators
TicketsThu., Nov. 3, 7:00pm
Arizona State University Sun Devils Hockey vs. University of Michigan
TicketsFri., Nov. 4, 7:05pm
The basis for the lawsuit was Robbins' daughter's claim that in the days before her death, the woman changed her mind about wanting to be frozen for eternity. Therefore, the $50,000 annuity Robbins had in place to pay for the freezing would go to the family.
Unfortunately for Robbins' daughter, there was no documentation of the change of heart, and the only legal documents Robbins signed regarding her remains were inked in 2006, which gave Alcor possession of her body and the $50k.
"The only people that stood to gain were the family," Wolff says.
Court documents provided by Wolff show that since signing the documents in 2006, Robbins made it known to anyone who would listen that she planned to be frozen when she croaked and even wore a medic-alert bracelet saying that if she were found dead, her body shoud be taken to Alcor for freezing.
The court docs also contend that in the days before Mary Robbins' death, daughter Darlene Robbins withheld pain medication so that she could "explain" to her mother that Alcor's protocols could not be performed at a hospice. According to the docs, this was just days after paperwork was drafted to have the annuity changed to make Darlene Robbins the recipient of the money.
After sitting in the hospice in pain, Robbins requested "that piece of paper."
"That piece of paper" was the change-in-beneficiary form drafted by Darlene Robbins, and according to the court documents, Mary Robbins was in so much pain that her hand needed to be steadied just to sign it.
The signed change-in-beneficiary form has nothing to do with who gets Robbins' bod, though, so the judge sided with Alcor and the 2006 agreement.
The money, Wolff says, is a battle for a different day, and when asked if Alcor would freeze the woman even if the annuity goes to Robbins' family, he says "absolutely."
Lesson of the day: If you want Alcor to freeze you for free, set up an annuity to pay for it years in advance, and then sign it away to your kid right before you bite the dust.
Get the This Week's Top Stories Newsletter
Every week we collect the latest news, music and arts stories — along with film and food reviews and the best things to do this week — so that you'll never miss Phoenix New Times' biggest stories.