The funeral for 65-year-old Carol Tan Wong was interrupted by a stranger who made derogatory remarks about “incense at Asian churches” being the cause of her death.
On March 18 at a funeral home in Quincy, Massachusetts, Wong’s son, Adrian, delivered a eulogy for his mother, who he said wasn’t a smoker nor was she exposed to second-hand smoke.
She died of lung cancer on March 2, which Adrian said was simply a result of “bad luck,” according to the Daily Mail.
After his speech, David Small, a private investigator in Quincy, stood in front of the open casket and began to give unsolicited remarks, claiming that Wong’s death was a result of “smoke in Asian churches,” even though he didn’t know the woman or her family.
“I’m not affected by this but I see that the smoke in the church in the Asian churches is so prevalent that I gag when I go inside,” said Small, who was apparently invited to the funeral by his girlfriend who he says is of Asian descent.
“I hope what I’ve told you about the smoke in the church is not taken in offense. I mean it’s your culture.”
Adrian Wong posted a video of the bizarre speech on YouTube, titled “After Mom’s Thoughtful Eulogy An Offensive Funeral Attendee Disgraces Her Memory.”
“I find it very offensive and I think the community should as well. We thought it was wildly inappropriate to use a broad comment about the entire community,” Wong told WBZ-TV. “I think he owes an apology not just to me, but to the entire community.”
Describing himself as “outspoken,” Small has reportedly apologized and admitted that his inappropriate remarks were made in the wrong place as the wrong time.
Small claims he was just trying to point out that there’s a “high rate of smoking in the Asian community, and Asians burn incense in their churches, which is a health risk.”