Once, we went to collect a body from an old folks’ home. As it was a shared room, the dead person was in one bed, and someone was sleeping in the other. When we were called, we arrived quickly, and when I went to move the body onto our stretcher, it started coughing,” says an employee who transports bodies to the funeral home.
An employee told us that one time, when they went to close a casket, they found two metro passes in the dead person’s pocket. He kept them, and then felt so guilty that he said an “Our Father” and two “Hail Marys” for the deceased every time he used them.
February 1901 Ottawa Citizen
The recurring fears of employees include:
– that the body moves.
– that the body “breaks.”
– getting the wrong body.
– getting stuck to the body when they use glue.
– positioning the body wrong and having it fall down in the middle of the service
Not every funeral home makes up the bodies before the funerals. Sometimes they simply clean the body up a little, glue it shut, and dress it up.
“Once, there was a 90-year-old lady whose family wanted to bury her in the wedding dress she wore when she got married in her twenties. In those cases, we cut the clothes and place them on top of the body. We at least try to get the sleeves on to make the body look like it’s dressed.”
Funeral parlors can be so full of feelings, energies, spirits — and whatever else we believe in — that some find it necessary to “cleanse” from time to time.
Cleansing rites can range from the classic — like burning sage — to the more obscure —like leaving glasses of water to absorb energies. Some even hire specialists or members of religious orders to help.
“We don’t recommend bringing animals or small children to funeral parlors because they perceive more things than we do,” explained one employee. She said that dogs will sometimes start barking at nothing. Or at least nothing any human can see.
Information where you can buy all Linda Seccaspina’s books-You can also read Linda in The Townships Sun andScreamin’ Mamas (USA)