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Nearly 40 years since Watkins turned a former Confederate general’s Victorian house in the West End into a funeral home, he has built a multimillion dollar empire that lays to rest roughly 1,500 people each year. Watkins organized the funerals of Coretta Scott King, Lillian Miles Lewis (Congressman John Lewis’s wife of 50 years), and family members of Usher and Real Housewives of Atlanta star Phaedra Parks.
Authorities have finally identified the victim as 22-year-old New Jersey resident Michael George Smith Jr., but still-unanswered questions will likely keep conspiracy theories percolating.
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