“How do you work at a funeral home?”
The answer is simple. There is no feeling other than being behind the wheel of a hearse carrying a casket draped with an American flag while being escorted by some of the finest departments in the state. In case you didn’t know, Mt. Pleasant Police Department will lead you through town and then they quickly hop from the vehicle with their hand over their heart for the family/veteran…seeing the city fire department pulled to the end of the drive standing in front of their engine to pay respects….while passing through your hometown of Hampshire, the people at the stores, yard sales, and walking on the sidewalks quickly stop or pull over as a sign of respect.. You will find the answers to that question above.. As we traveled to the cemetery I was most humble for what the American flag represented in my rear view mirror.
These are not horrible places to live, these places are what we call home.
Growing up my mother immediately noticed me scanning the newspaper columns while searching for the obituaries. Once I found the obituaries, I would examine the pictures of those printed. This started around the age of four. In 1999 at the age of 10 my great grandmother passed away. I remember staying with my grandmother to keep her company as she had just lost her mother, and I was somewhat angry I wasn’t allowed to make arrangements with her because the funeral home wasn’t a scary place to me like they described to me to lure my wants of going away. At the time I didn’t realize that making arrangements wasn’t a place for children.
Several years later, I lost both of my grandfathers within seven months of each other. Both grandmothers were extremely devastated and I remember ‘smothering” them with love in hopes of giving comfort in those days surrounding the visitation / service. They were just exhausted, and I didn’t want them to lift a finger.
Fast-forward several more years to graduation and college where I was attending Columbia State to become a registered nurse. During my second semester I lost a friend, in a horrible automobile accident, and was able to help her mother during the loss and funeral. These horrible minutes, weeks and months after her death molded my life. I found my purpose in life and it was to serve the community and people I love. I was able to come to Williams Funeral Home hoping for an interview, and they gave me that chance. Now that nursing school was out the window they guided me into Mortuary School.
Here we are 5 years later and I am now a licensed funeral director and crematory operator. Often, I have people ask me, “How did this happen and why do you work at a funeral home” They speak like its something that happens to the unfortunate, but to me there is no where I would rather be. I love serving the families placed before me.