Weekly News 7/17/2015: Funeral home weddings and unique ceremonies

By: Funeralwise | Date: Mon, July 20th, 2015

Funeral home weddings: Darth Vador
Darth Vader leads Lorna Johnson's funeral processing. (Source: people.com)

In this week news we saw unique ceremonies highlighted as a British grandmother was laid to rest in a Halloween-themed funeral. We also read about how the funeral industry is working to expand its services by hosting weddings and other events. Sadly, we said goodbye to Nintendo president, Satoru Iwata and a brave teen who completed her bucket list by saving a friend’s life.

Weekly News 7/17/2015: Unique ceremonies and funeral home weddings

IOUs for RIPs: Greece’s cash crisis creates hardships for funeral homes and mourning families

Jul 17, 2015–usnews.com: Greece’s cash crisis has disrupted all aspects of daily life — death included. Greek funeral homes are struggling to cope with banking restrictions that limit customers to taking out only 60 euros ($65) a day in cash. Even a modest funeral service in Greece costs more than 15 times that, in a country that traditionally carries out funerals shortly after death and pays for them almost entirely in cash… Read the full story


Funeral home wedding

In this June 19, 2015 photo, Danessa Molinder walks towards the Crystal Tower for photos before her wedding at the Community Life Center, in Indianapolis. The somewhat ironically named Community Life Center sits on cemetery land near a funeral home. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings) via Fortune.com

Cemeteries, funerals branch beyond death business into weddings, other events

July 17, 2015–foxnews.com: Danessa Molinder entered the courtyard wearing a white dress and matching veil. Her groom waited at the other end, in front of decorative doors and lattice work that blocked the view of a nearby cemetery with 73,000 graves. Molinder’s June wedding was one of more than 50 that will be hosted this year at a $10 million events center run by the Washington Park East Cemetery Association in Indianapolis… Read the full story

>> Related: Funeral homes could be the hot new wedding venue


New Research shows funeral workers more likely to develop deadly ALS

July 17, 2015–madamenoire.com: Published in the Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery & Psychiatry, researcher Anna Roberts found that men who had high exposure to formaldehyde on their job were three times more likely to die from ALS, also known as Lou Gherig’s disease, a disease in which nerve cells in the brain and spinal chord die slowly. All 493 men were funeral directors… Read the full story

>>Related: Why Funeral Directors May Be at Higher Risk for ALS


Woman’s Halloween-Themed Funeral Features Witches, Beetlejuice, And A Eulogy By Darth Vader

Funeral home weddings: Darth Vador

Darth Vader leads Lorna Johnson’s funeral processing. (Source: people.com)

Jul 17, 2015: bustle.com: You fools can keep your Christmas and your Thanksgiving and whatever other perfectly mediocre holiday you’ve decided is the greatest of them all. Halloween is where it’s at. You know who agreed with me? 56 year-old mother and grandmother Lorna Johnson of the United Kingdom. When Lorna lost her 9-month battle with lung cancer, her children decided to honor her spirit of fun, whimsy, and self-identification as a “white witch” with a Halloween-themed funeral… Read the full story


Thousands of Nintendo fans pay respects at Satoru Iwata funeral

Jul 17, 2015–eurogamer.net: Nintendo employees and fans alike have paid their respects to the company’s late president Satoru Iwata, who passed away last weekend aged just 55. Iwata’s final resting place, a Japanese temple in Nintendo’s home city of Kyoto, was visited by more than 3000 people over the past few days. A funeral ceremony held this morning was attended by numerous members of the Japanese industry, including Nintendo’s own Shigeru Miyamoto, former Sonic Team boss Yuji Naka and Q-Games’ Dylan Cuthbert… Read the full story


Meet the undertaker couple who posed for their wedding photos with a coffin

Jul 17, 2015–au.news.yahoo.net: A fatal train crash was the catalyst for a Singapore couple’s death inspired wedding shoot – because the groom’s parents were on board. Darren Cheng and Jenny Tay gained the nickname ‘the undertaker couple’ after their wedding photos caused controversy when they were shot dressed to the nines sitting on a coffin. Darren, 30, and Jenny, 29, run Direct Funeral Services in Singapore. When the photos went viral the couple explained it was because they wanted to remove the ‘taboo’ when it comes to talking about death… Read the full story


From Compost You Came and to Compost You Shall Return

Jul 15, 2015–slate.com: If Katrina Spade gets her way, using decomposed corpses as fertilizer will be as common a practice as traditional burial and cremation. Spade is the founder of the Urban Death Project, an organization that plans to compost dead bodies with woodchips inside a three-story concrete core. The New York Times recently called it “a startling next step in the natural burial movement” and in May the project’s Kickstarter raised more than $90,000 to design its first composting facility, which should break ground in Seattle by 2022… Read the full story


Funeral home weddings: Rebecca Townsend

Rebecca Townsend (Source: People.com)

Connecticut Teen Completes Bucket List by Sacrificing Her Life to Save Her Friend

Jul 15, 2015: people.com:  Kiss in the rain. Fly to Spain. Save a life. Those were the items Rebecca Townsend put on her bucket list for a high school assignment in December 2012. Over the next two-and-a-half years, she checked the first two off her list. And on July 2, the 17-year-old from Connecticut fulfilled the final item by pushing her friend, Ben Arne, out of the way of an oncoming car. But it came at a terrible price – her own life… Read the full story


End-of-Life Doulas Provide a Helping Hand to the Dying

Jul 13, 2015–medscape.com:  Just as birth doulas help mothers bring their newborns into the world, end-of-life doulas can bring comfort and support to those who are dying. Depending on their training and background, an end-of-life doula can provide emotional, spiritual, practical, or medical support — or all of the above… Read the full story


Woman Buys Locket at Thrift Store, Finds Something So Unsettling Inside

Jul 13, 2015–womansday.com: You can find all sorts of intriguing items at a thrift store, whether it’s antique glassware or a piece of art that catches your eye. One thing’s for certain, though—the ashes of a once-living being tucked inside a pretty locket is not generally on your shopping list. When one woman opened a delicate, heart-shaped locket that she purchased at the White River Junction Listen Thrift Store in Vermont, she found what she believes to be cremated remains left inside a small capsule… Read the full story


Knowing How Doctors Die Can Change End-Of-Life Discussions

Jul 6, 2015–npr.com: Dr. Kendra Fleagle Gorlitsky recalls the anguish she felt performing CPR on elderly, terminally ill patients. It looks nothing like what we see on TV. In real life, ribs often break and few survive the ordeal. “I felt like I was beating up people at the end of their life,” she says. “I would be doing the CPR with tears coming down sometimes, and saying, ‘I’m sorry, I’m sorry, goodbye.’ Because I knew that it very likely not going to be successful. It just seemed a terrible way to end someone’s life… Read the full story

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