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Pittsburgh Funeral Director Says It Is Not Uncommon For Fans To Scatter Ashes At Sporting Events

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) -- A Pittsburgh funeral director said it is not uncommon for fans to scatter ashes at sporting events.

"We laugh, of course, but you shouldn't just do that," funeral director LeeAnn Sherman said. "We always tell them not to make it obvious if you are scattering and don't be scattering in a public place because you are going to get in trouble."

KDKA's camera was in the endzone at Heinz Field on Sunday when a commotion broke out in Section 133 after someone partially scattered ashes in the stands and on the edge of the playing field.

heinz field ashes
(Photo Credit: KDKA)

Witnesses told KDKA they were hit with the ashes and called security. Guards watched over the remains until the game was over. A hazmat crew came in and took the ashes away.

Heinz Field Management released a statement on Monday, saying:

"An incident occurred during the game at Heinz Field on Sunday where a fan was spreading ashes of a deceased family member in the stadium. Heinz Field Management does not permit or condone such actions. While we respect those fans who may be interested in honoring a family member by spreading their family's ashes inside the stadium, Heinz Field cannot accommodate those requests due to state and local regulations.

"We have responded to communications from our fans throughout the years that this type of action is not permissible."

Sherman told KDKA if you were one of the fans hit with the ashes, there is no need to worry.

"It is not toxic in any way. You're not going to get sick. Medically, you'll be fine," Sherman said.

KDKA caught up with some people outside Heinz Field on Monday who said it doesn't surprise them, as Steeler fans are a rare breed.

"It doesn't shock me to think that somebody wanted their ashes spread after a Pittsburgh Steelers game," James Vitale said.

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