Care of the Dead
The Journey Begins
Alexandra Kathryn Mosca, and Doris V. Amen, are two well-known and respected names in funeral service.
Another Well-Known Public Figure With No Public Funeral
When Barbara Walters died on December 30, 2022, at the age of 93, the world took notice. Although she had not had a public presence in some time, the death of the legendary broadcast journalist saddened people around the world. The decision to have no public funeral for Barbara Walters shortchanged so many who wanted…
The Sad Reality: Human Composting is Now Legal in New York
It’s a sad day when legislation passes that allows for the composting of humans. It shows a lack of respect for values and traditions, and makes a mockery of the sanctity of life. This is not something that the average person wants. It’s just so much hype. We seriously doubt this will ever take off…
Thriving As A Woman In a Male-Dominated Industry
Funeral service is no longer a male-dominated industry. In fact, across the country, females outnumber males in mortuary schools. It was not always like that. In our latest interview, we tell what it was like when we began our careers in funeral service, and how we chose to work in harmony with our male colleagues.
Because That’s the Way We’ve Always Done It
Yesterday, I was chatting with a colleague I had not seen in some time. She comes from a long line of funeral directors, one of which was her grandmother, and was married to a popular funeral director for many years until his death. She’s a busy funeral director, and rarely uses social media. But she…
Are You Thinking of Hiring a Funeral Photographer?
Today, photographing the dead is making a comeback. But this time it’s not only the deceased who are being photographed – it’s the entire funeral service. Candid shots of the somber rituals, loved ones embracing, mourners comforting one another, are all captured with empathy, and discretion by professional photographers. Duane Knight is one of the…
Elaine & Jimmy: A Tale of Two Restaurateurs
During a recent conversation about iconic New York City restaurants, I mentioned Elaine’s. “Elaine’s? Never heard of it,” someone said. “Never heard of Elaine’s!?” I asked in surprise about the restaurant which had been featured prominently in the opening scene of Woody Allen’s film Manhattan. But maybe I should not have been so surprised. Soon after the death…
What Happens To Cremated Remains Thereafter?
When a New York funeral home closed its door a few years ago, it found itself in the midst of a moral dilemma it had never bargained for. There, on its shelves, were more than 275 boxes of cremains never picked up by the families of the deceased. Some dated back 100 years. Legally, it…
What You Need To Know When Considering a Home Funeral
In 1911, when newspaper publisher and journalist Joseph Pulitzer died, he was waked in the library of his Manhattan home. The room was filled with floral tributes and the furniture arranged for the assembly of mourners. Throughout the morning, family, friends, and employees came to pay their respects to the journalistic icon who reposed in…
For a brief time, when I was a young funeral director, I had license plates on my car which read DOA-RIP. Admittedly, I thought they were clever and set me apart. The plates garnered mention in a few newspapers, and other funeral directors who read about –or saw–them were not amused. In fact, they chided…
NYSFDA, Spare Us the TikTok eClips
Lately, the weekly eClips, sent by the NYSFDA, have contained more and more links to embarrassing articles by so-called viral sensations on TiKTok. The most recent article, about a mortuary student who “has lifted the lid” (this expression is gag-inducing) about repairing “injuries on deceased people” with clay (which is not used in actual practice)…