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Body of man inside stolen funeral home van identified, suspect still at large

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The remains of a man were identified on Tuesday after a van carrying his body was stolen outside a Rockford funeral home on the weekend.

Curtis Brown, 47, died of natural causes Thursday night in a Winnebago County hospital, according to the coroner’s office.

After the hospital released Brown’s body on Friday evening, it was transported in a van to the Collins & Stone Funeral Home, located at 128 South 5th Street, where it was reported stolen the following day.

Investigators had recovered the van at the 1400 block of East 87th Street at Chicago Sunday evening, but the man’s body was still missing.

The body of the 47-year-old man was on Monday evening behind an empty house in the 8200 block of South Manistee Avenue in the South Chicago neighborhood, about 2.5 miles from where the van was.

The Winnebago County coroner’s office transported Brown’s body to Rockford as his family works with an out-of-state funeral home to return his remains to Mississippi, the coroner’s office said.

Police have released surveillance photos of a man they say is wanted in connection with the theft of the Chrysler Town & Country van from outside the funeral home.

The suspect was seen in the photos wearing a black hoodie, dark pants, black shoes and white gloves. As of Monday evening, police were still looking for the suspect.

Authorities have asked anyone with information about the suspect or the theft to contact Rockford Police.

Further details were not immediately available.

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Written by Natalia Chi

Chicago Popular; Chicago breaking news, weather and live video. Covering local politics, health, traffic and sports for Chicago, the suburbs and northwest Indiana.

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