Coroner

Contact Information

Edward Howell, Coroner

Office of the Wayne County Coroner
925 Court Street
Honesdale, PA 18431
Phone: (570) 253-5970 Ext. 1340
Direct: (570) 253-4952
Fax: (570) 647-1594

Hours of Operation: 24 Hours per Day, 7 Days per Week, 365 Days per Year

Office Hours: Standard Courthouse Schedule*

*Please be aware, that due to the nature of this office, urgent matters may call us away at any time.
While we may not be in the office when you call, we are always available for emergencies. If your matter is urgent, please call the Wayne County Communications Center at 570-253-3109 and ask to page the coroner.


Staff

Mark James, BS, Chief Deputy Coroner
Laura Swingle, RN, BSN, Death Investigation Supervisor, Deputy Coroner
Aimee Pearson, A.A., Administrative Assistant, Deputy Coroner
Etta Day, EMT-Paramedic, Deputy Coroner
Carol Lienert, RN, MSN, CRNP, Deputy Coroner
Robert Morcom, EMT, Deputy Coroner


About The Coroner

Coroner Edward Howell, B.S., FD, was first elected to office in November of 2011. On January 3rd, 2012, he was affirmed into office in the main courtroom at the Wayne County Courthouse. Re-elected to a second term in 2015, Coroner Howell is enjoying a continued privilege to serve the people of Wayne County.

A lifelong resident of Wayne County, Coroner Howell was raised on the family dairy farm in Clinton Township. A 2007 graduate of Western Wayne High School, he went on to earn an A.O.S. Degree in Funeral Service & Mortuary Science from Simmons Institute of Funeral Service in Syracuse, NY. He also earned a Bachelor of Science in Biopsychology with concentrations in Bereavement Counseling and Education after matriculating at Millersville University and Messiah College. Coroner Howell attained certification by the Pennsylvania Coroner’s Education Board of the Attorney General’s Office after completing studies in December 2011 in the Pennsylvania Coroner’s Education Course at Hershey, PA. Coroner Howell is a Pennsylvania Licensed Funeral Director & Embalmer, and is an active member of the PA State Coroner’s Association and the International Association of Coroners and Medical Examiners. He is the Chairperson of the Wayne County Chapter of the Child Death Review Team and participates at the state level with the PA Child Death Review Team of the PA American Academy of Pediatrics. Coroner Howell serves on the Executive Board of the Pennsylvania State Coroner’s Association.

Coroner Howell Resides near the family farm in Upper Creamton, Clinton Township with his wife, Anna (Rennekamp) Howell, and their two sons, Matthias and Josiah. The Howell’s enjoy the opportunity to contribute to the efforts of family agriculture on one of the county’s few remaining dairy farms.


Information for Funeral Directors

CREMATION AUTHORIZATION / IRREVERSIBLE DISPOSITION

When the intended disposition of ANY person whose death occurred in Wayne County is to be irreversible, (i.e. Cremation, Body Donation to Science, Burial at Sea, etc.), the Licensed Funeral Director overseeing the disposition MUST obtain written authorization from the Coroner or a Deputy Coroner PRIOR to the disposition.

The Law pertaining to this can be found in Section 1237 A.9. of the Pennsylvania Code.

5 Steps to Obtain Authorization:

  1. BEFORE DISPOSITION: Fax a completed copy of the Death Certificate to our office (FAX: 570-647-1594) with “Request for Permission to Cremate” written or typed in the margin on the right, or you may include a cover sheet indicating your request in addition to the Death Certificate. Please be sure to include your return fax number.
  2. When the Coroner or Deputy Coroner has completed his or her review of the death, the requestor will be provided written authorization, if it is granted, OR the requestor may be made aware of a denial or delay. Submitting a request does not automatically result in authorization.
  3. There is a $35.00 fee for this service payable to “Wayne County Treasurer.” Checks may be mailed to the Office of the Coroner.
  4. It is advisable for Funeral Directors to include a copy of the Coroner’s Authorization for Cremation/Irreversible Disposition to their crematory operator in addition to the Burial/Transit Permit and Family Authorization. This may prevent crematory operators from proceeding based on a verbal directive or assumption.
  5. If you have any questions, or need additional help with a request, please don’t hesitate to contact our office.

General Information

REQUESTS FOR STATISTICS OR RECORDS
We are frequently contacted by individuals and agencies looking for information for specific death statistics. Please know that all records which are for public inspection are filed in accordance with the following law:

SECTION 1251 – OFFICIAL RECORDS OF CORONER

Every coroner, within thirty (30) days after the end of each year, shall deposit all of his official records and papers for the preceding year in the office of the prothonotary for the inspection of all persons interested therein.
1955, Aug. 9, P.L. 323, Sec. 1251

Based on the above, we are unable to compile specific data at any given point through the year. Please know that you are able to obtain the public records of the Office of the Coroner via the Office of the Prothonotary. As stated in the law, records are compiled annually for public review. Therefore, for example, all deaths certified by the Coroner in 2016 become an accessible public record on or around January 31, 2017, and can be obtained in the Office of the Prothonotary.

Annual Report Data is included below on this webpage for your convenience.

DEATH CERTIFICATES

This office does not provide certified copies of death certificates. If you are looking for a death certificate for someone who died in Pennsylvania, you must contact the Pennsylvania Department of Health, Division of Vital Records. The Scranton Office is located at: Scranton State Office Building (Room 112) 100 Lackawanna Ave. Scranton, PA. The phone number is: 570-963-4595. Or visit their website: www.health.state.pa.us/vitalrecords

Annual Reports

2012 Annual Report
2013 Annual Report
2014 Annual Report
2015 Annual Report
2016 Annual Report