Funeral homes live streaming, holding private family services

By SUSAN AMUNDSON,

As COVID-19 overtakes the routine of people at schools, churches and businesses, another area is also being affected by this virus: the funeral business.

Columbia managers and owners shared what it being done to combat the virus while still doing what they can to honor the deceased.

Marcus Kelly, manager of Hathorn Funeral Home, said the funeral home is currently not offering services inside the building. Family members may hold private services and the funeral home is willing to live stream the services on its Facebook page and do a public graveside ceremony as long as social distancing is followed in accordance with CDC guidelines.

Kelly said they are asking families to make as much of the arrangements as possible over the telephone and through email.

At Cook Galloway Funeral Home, Tim Galloway, one of the owners, is asking for no more than one or two family members to come in to make the arrangements. They are recommending doing graveside services and asking for no more than 10 people to attend.

Danny Jackson, manager of Colonial Funeral Home, said they are doing everything they can to adhere to the CDC guidelines, specifically in maintaining 10 or less at a gathering.

The funeral home is willing to do visitation and services as long as there are no more than 10 people in attendance. They are also willing to livestream the services on their Facebook page so others may still take part.

Jackson said graveside services are also an option. He said they are willing to do what they can to make the families as comfortable as possible, including handling arrangements over the telephone or even going to the family’s home so no one has to come out.

Jackson said they will strictly adhere to the guidelines for at least the next two weeks and will reevaluate it then. 

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