The flyers, posted on bus stops, say, "My loving mother and grandma with 14 grandchildren and 7 great grandchildren, died while visiting family needs HELP with funeral cost. If you'd like to help please call 201-667-7822. My name is Donald McLaughlin."
Reached Thursday morning, McLaughlin said that his mother, Catherine McLaughlin, was 86 when she died on Tuesday. He said that she grew up in Camden, N.J. and lived with him for a time in Hoboken in the 1970s before she moved to a rural area of North Carolina to stay with one of his sisters. However, recently, she became ill. She expressed a desire to live out her days in her native New Jersey, Donald said.
So the family brought her on an Amtrak train for nine hours to Donald's home. When she became gravely ill, with a hacking cough, he took her to a local hospital, he said. They were able to treat her at first, but after four days, she passed away.
Donald said that despite her large family, many of their relatives down South are having trouble getting the money to travel to New Jersey for the funeral. He also said that many of the family members are not working, and are having trouble cobbling together the money for the funeral and burial costs, which amount to a few thousand dollars.
He said he lived in Hoboken until approximately 15 years ago, when he could no longer afford the rent. Now he lives in Union City.
"When I lived in Hoboken, there used to be a lot of visitors to town," he said Thursday. "I was telling my sister, maybe someone will take the time to read the flyers."
Donald also said he put jars in stores in town to collect money.
If you want to help or find out more, you can reach Donald at the phone number in this article.