A Crash Course in Listening: 3 Do’s and Don’ts

  One of the biggest concerns people have when they encounter a bereaved individual isn’t (strangely enough) how the bereaved person is doing, but “what do I say to them?” The secret to “what to say” is simple in theory, but ironic … Continue reading

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Seeing is Believing: The Empty Caskets of 9/11

There’s the age old phrase, “seeing is believing” and for so many of us, it rings true. At O’Connor we’ve seen families testify to this truth over and over, telling us that seeing their loved one at peace helped to bring … Continue reading

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A List You Need to Have | Planning Ahead for What You Want

Ok, have I got a list for you! As you know and perhaps have seen first hand, most families have to make decisions about ceremonies with only days to plan. A lot of special conversations are avoided because people are … Continue reading

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After They Die: Sorting Through Their “Stuff”

  Getting rid of someone’s stuff after they die is tough. It is an admission. For some people, it is the ultimate act of reconciling the permanence of a loss. A lot of “stuff” – baseball cards, the shirt from … Continue reading

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Mother’s Day Without Mom

Mother’s Day without Mom, it changes everything. What do you do? How do you “celebrate” the day? It is my mom’s first Mother’s Day without her mom. None of the usual, sweet birthday cards came from my grandma last month … Continue reading

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I Needed To See Her In That Pink Casket: Viewing Our Loved Ones

  When my grandmother died she looked grotesque. She suffered a sudden heart attack and was given CPR for quite a while before they stopped. When I walked in, a huge tube was in her mouth with flecks of blood, … Continue reading

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There was Glitter in Her Hair When Grandma Died: The Construction of a Death Story

I was speeding by cars on the freeway driving like a maniac; my mom needed me at the hospital. My grandma had just been admitted, maybe had a heart attack – no one knew – but my mom had simply … Continue reading

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Grieving Non-Death Losses

Last year I attended a conference where the topic of a panel was the significance of grief connected to non-death losses. The researchers focused their sites on college campuses and found that many students were ranking break-ups, friendship changes, divorces … Continue reading

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Handling the Holidays: Adjusting to the Loss

  For some of you, this is not the first holiday where you will be missing people you love. You “survived” the holidays last year but maybe just barely. Perhaps you feel like you can’t get in the spirit of … Continue reading

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25 Years + 1 Mortuary = A Career of Meaning

Monday, December 1st, marked the 25th Work-iversary of Jeff Turner, our Chief Administrative Officer! Feeling that this event merited more than a celebratory lunch, speech and many “Congratulations,” we decided a blog was in order. We have all pooled together … Continue reading

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