Gary Coleman's Parents & Ex-Wife Battle Over His Body, Funeral

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Jun. 3 2010, Published 6:30 a.m. ET

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Diff'rent Strokes star Gary Coleman’s parent and his ex wife are battling over his body and funeral.

Coleman’s former manager and family spokesman Victor Perillo says Sue and Willie Coleman are seeking custody of his body, is reporting.

AUDIO: Hear Gary Coleman's 911 Tape

They want it returned to the star's boyhood home in Zion, Illinois, a small town about 50 miles north of Chicago.

Coleman’s ex-wife, Shannon Price, had announced the former child actor’s funeral would be held in Salt Lake City this weekend.

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However, Perillo has told Associated Press the Colemans want a small, private ceremony.

Coleman’s body could be returned to Illinois as soon as Friday, he said.

Perillo insisted Coleman's parents are the legal custodians of his body because he was divorced from his wife, Shannon Price, in 2008.

"The arrangement we're working on now is to get Gary back to his next of kin, which is his parents,” Perillo said.


“The funeral home has been notified, the sheriff's office, we've notified them that there is to be no communication on where the body is to go unless its dealt with legally with Gary's next of kin, and that's the way it stands right now.”

Coleman died Friday in Utah from a brain hemorrhage at age 42.

VIDEO: Coleman And His Wife Discuss Their Crazy Fights

It was Price who ordered that Coleman be taken off of life support, claiming she was was named in an advanced as his health care directive, a document that allowed her to make health care decisions for her ex-husband.

In an interview, Price said Coleman couldn't be saved after suffering the injuries and she didn't want him left in a vegetative state.

“He'd basically be like Muhammad Ali ... I mean, Gary was gone," she said.



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