Funeral homes return to hosting in person services

NOW: Funeral homes return to hosting in person services

OSCEOLA, Ind. --- Many families were unable to say goodbye over the past year to their loved ones and now with restrictions easing up funeral homes are finally able to give them the closure they've been waiting for.

“The whole point of the funeral really isn’t for the deceased. It’s for those that are left behind. It’s the people that want to gather and have support for each other. To give a hug, to give a handshake to say hey I’m here and I care," said Brandon Cruz, Funeral Director of Cruz Family Funeral Home and Cremation Service.

There were less people able to comfort each other, to mourn together, in a year where many families faced unexpected loss.

Cruz says it was difficult for clients to find the right way to grieve.

“In the beginning of the pandemic we were able to take care of the services that were necessary right away and then we gave them the opportunity to gather later. We’re starting to catch up now with some of those families that were in the very height of the pandemic," said Cruz.

With the pandemic forcing many to rely on virtual ceremonies and cremations it was difficult for funeral directors like j. Patrick McGann to find a way to keep business going.

“We had one family that we had to refund like $6,700 to of income that we normally would have had just from that one family," said McGann, President of McGann Hay Forest G. Hay Funeral Home.

Now as in person ceremonies return, families are finally able to gather together to give their final goodbyes.

But some funeral directors say a lingering effect of the pandemic, is how people remember loved ones they lose too soon.

“There’s still a few people that decided to you know cut short their public part of their funeral service and you know maybe doing a little private thing at home. So there still is that segment of the society that does not feel real safe yet," said McGann.

Both directors say families are able to still have restrictions like social distancing and masks at ceremonies present if they choose to.

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