Friday, April 22, 2016

Do families care about what we do?

Rich Darby,
Chief Operating Officer
As a funeral professional, I often ask myself, “Have I made an impact on the families I serve?” That question was answered just a few weeks ago.

It was a normal day in the office when I received a call from a lady named Teresa. It was the 15 year anniversary to when I helped make her mother's funeral arrangements. She had been thinking about her mother's service that day and wanted to thank me for taking care of her mother all those years ago. She remembered so much about the service and the planning of her mother's life celebration. She remembered every detail, including the time we spent at her home writing the obituary, picking out her mother's outfit for burial and going through family pictures. She ended the call by thanking me for the rose I laid on her mother’s bed after we took her body into our care. She still has the rose, and it means so much to her. She remembers dreading going back into her mother’s room that day to see an empty bed but was pleasantly surprised when she saw that simple sign of love. It brought tears of joy to her eyes.

What I didn’t realize 15 years ago, when I was just “doing my job,” was that my normal daily activities were something very special to Teresa and they would stick with her forever. All of those little extras are what stuck in her mind. They stuck so strongly that it initiated a phone call to me 15 years later. I cannot tell you how humbled and honored I was to receive her call. Often times in this profession, we may feel taken for granted. But, we couldn’t be more wrong. It is our job to care for these families during one the hardest times of their life. We have to keep doing all those extra special things that we do because it will last a lifetime.

So for all of you reading this article, thank you for being the professionals that you are. Each and every day you make a difference in someone’s life. I only hope and pray that you receive a call 15 years later. It warmed my heart.  

This article originally appeared in Trigard Tuesdays, our weekly electronic newsletter featuring information for the funeral industry. Sign up for your free subscription at

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