TAMPA, Fla. – Terri Schiavo's (search) husband buried her cremated remains Monday, inscribing on her bronze grave marker "I kept my promise."
The inscription inflamed Schiavo's parents, who had waged a long legal battle to keep their severely brain-damaged daughter alive. They also complained that they had not been notified about the service beforehand.
Michael Schiavo (search) — who said he promised his wife he would not keep her alive artificially — also listed on the bronze grave marker Feb. 25, 1990, as the date his wife "Departed this Earth."
On that date, Schiavo collapsed and fell into what most doctors said was an irreversible vegetative state.
Schiavo actually died March 31, nearly two weeks after her feeding tube was removed by court order. The grave marker lists that date as when Schiavo was "at peace."
David Gibbs, an attorney for the woman's parents, Bob and Mary Schindler (search), decried the inscriptions on the marker.
"Obviously, that's a real shot and another unkind act toward a grieving mom and dad," Gibbs said.
Two days after Terri Schiavo's death, the 41-year-old was cremated and her husband was given possession of her remains.
Michael Schiavo had said her ashes would be buried at a family plot in Pennsylvania. But on Monday his attorney, George Felos, said in a statement that the service and burial had taken place at Sylvan Abbey Memorial Park in Clearwater.
The statement did not explain why Schiavo, who lives near Clearwater, decided to keep his wife's remains in Florida. He did not return a phone call seeking additional information.
Schiavo's parents had opposed her cremation and hoped to bury her in their adopted state of Florida. Services for Schiavo already had been conducted in nearby Gulfport, where her parents live, and in Pennsylvania, where she grew up.
The Schindlers' attorney said the family was notified by fax only after Monday's service, when the family had already started getting calls from reporters.
Felos' statement said the Schindlers were notified of the service and burial.
A pond and fountain also mark the woman's grave, where the flat bronze marker was festooned with flowers Monday evening.
Terri Schiavo collapsed in 1990 after a chemical imbalance caused her heart to stop. She left no written instructions in the event she became disabled, and her husband said she never would have wanted to be kept alive in what court-appointed doctors called a persistent vegetative state with no hope of recovery.
Her parents, however, doubted she had any such end-of-life wishes. They maintained she would benefit from rehabilitation, despite most doctors saying her condition was irreversible.
The seven-year battle engulfed the courts, Congress, the White House and divided the country.