LANCASTER – A plan to move the remains of a woman buried at a local cemetery is being opposed by some of the late woman’s family members, and they’re asking for the public’s help in funding a legal battle to block the relocation.
Robin Klajic died in January of 2013 at the age of 33, and she was buried at Joshua Memorial Park in Lancaster, according to her sister, Nicole McKenzie.
“She had a 13-year-old son at the time that was sent to live with his dad,” McKenzie said. “We decided it would be best to bury Robin at Joshua Memorial less than 2 miles from where her son would be living so that he could have a place to visit his mother whenever he wanted. We were trying to make this awful experience less traumatic.”
McKenzie said she and the boy’s father, Eddie Ramirez, helped cover the cost to bury Robin. About a third of the funeral expenses were covered by Robin’s adoptive mother, former Santa Clarita mayor and councilwoman Jill Klajic, McKenzie said.
McKenzie said she was shocked when the funeral home contacted her recently to inform her that Jill Klajic planned to relocate Robin’s remains more than four hours away to a cemetery in Turlock, Calif.
“They have provided me no paperwork, no court orders, nothing… just to say that Jill Klajic hired an attorney and they do not want to get into the middle of it,” McKenzie said. “I do not understand how she can do this… We are looking for help to stop this from happening.”
“My sister hated this woman and had a restraining order against her when she died,” McKenzie claimed. She forwarded this document to The AV Times to prove her claim.
Contacted by telephone, Jill Klajic gave her side of the story.
“I’m the only mother [Robin] has ever had. I raised her from the time she was 2 years old,” Jill Klajic said. “Nicole [McKenzie] is a half-sister to Robin and Robin had very little to do with her until the last couple years of her life.”
During those years Robin was living in Burbank and she was addicted to prescription drugs, Jill Klajic said. Robin also reconnected with her biological mother, whom Jill claims supplied Robin with drugs.
“This was the mother from hell… her mother would go from doctor to doctor and get her the drugs that she needed,” Jill Klajic said. “The detective that investigated Robin’s death told me that she died from neglect… they were feeding her pills up until she died, she choked to death.”
In the weeks before her untimely passing, Robin reached out to her with a cry for help, Jill Klajic said.
“There was a phone message; it said, ‘Mom, I want to come home,’” Jill Klajic said, adding that she desperately tried to reach Robin, but could not get through. She said she was absolutely devastated when Robin passed away Jan. 23, 2013. Jill Klajic directed The AV Times to a memorial page she created for Robin and a letter she wrote honoring her “sweet funny young daughter’s life.” Read it here.
Jill Klajic denied being served with a restraining order concerning Robin Klajic. She said their relationship had become strained as she tried to get Robin off drugs, and Robin had threatened a restraining order but the document was never served.
Jill Klajic remains adamant about her plans to relocate Robin’s grave and says she expects it to be done “sometime this summer.”
“I’m 69 years old; I want my daughter with me in Turlock,” Jill Klajic said. “I never intended to leave her in Lancaster. She hated Lancaster.”
Robin’s son, now 15, can visit his mother’s grave in Turlock whenever he wants, Jill Klajic said. She said she would transport the boy herself if that is what it required.
The boy’s father, Eddie Ramirez, is hoping for a compromise.
“I tried talking to Jill, telling her, ‘Can you hold on for three more years?’” Ramirez said. “Leave Robin in Lancaster until my son turns 18 and goes off to college or the military. But Jill doesn’t want to wait, she wants her now. And that’s why she got an attorney involved.”
Robin’s son is shattered at the prospect of losing his mother all over again, according to McKenzie. Family and friends are reaching out to the public for help.
“I am requesting help in hiring an attorney to explore Robin’s son’s legal rights as well as to stop Joshua Memorial from exhuming Robin’s body until her son is 18 and can decide what he wants to do,” McKenzie said. “He should not have to deal with such trauma on top of what he has already had to go through at such a crucial time in his developing teenage years. This could emotionally scar him forever.”
Residents wishing to assist the family in this effort should contact Nicole McKenzie at firstname.lastname@example.org.
A representative from Joshua Memorial Park on Friday said the funeral home would not comment on the matter in order to respect the privacy of all parties involved.