Funeral Profession Reacts to 60 Minutes Segment “Final Resting Places”

May 22, 2012
The funeral profession was in an uproar yesterday following the 60 Minutes segment “Final Resting Places”. The content of the segment sparked conversation again around the regulations, or lack there of, placed on cemetery owners and management. The segment reported by Anderson Cooper was just another black eye for a profession that is under a constant magnifying glass. The thing that really sucks is that 98% of those in the profession are upstanding, caring, and honest business men and women. A couple of incompetent jerk wads ruin it for everyone. I think every association issued statements yesterday in response to the segment, but I believe the most actionable response came from my good friend Robin Heppell.

Robin posted the following statement on his Facebook Profile Sunday night immediately following the airing of the 60 Minutes segment:
“Attn: Cemeterians & Funeral Directors – Here is a good opportunity to tell your community that dealing with your firm is safe and respectful because tonight / tomorrow the public’s level of trust in us will have gone down a notch. Tomorrow is the time to say something positive. (Good job Paul Elvig!)”
Yesterday Robin posted this comment in response to our article “60 Minutes: “Final Resting Place” Story Turns Into 7:00 Minute SCI Bashing [VIDEO]”:

“Whether cemetery or funeral home, independent or corporate, today is a good opportunity to tell YOUR community that dealing with your firm is safe and respectful and explain why. Today is the time to say something positive.

I feel that the national opinion is lower than the local opinion, and here is an opportunity to demonstrate to your local community that your firm is different than these national scandals.

It’s times like these why Ryan, myself and others stress the importance of having a well connected, online social media network so that you can directly communicate to your community. Be proactive on this issue because if it is slow news day, your local media might be trying to “dig something up” in your backyard – take the first step.”

I like Robin’s approach, focus on your business and ensuring your local community (they are the only ones that matter to your business anyway) that you and your staff are honest and trustworthy. Focus on what you do positive.
Thank you Robin for your great advice and comments.
Here are links to the statements issued by:

Ryan Thogmartin

CEO at DISRUPT Media and
Ryan Thogmartin is the Owner and CEO of DISRUPT Media. DISRUPT Media is a full service social media agency specializing in social media strategy, management and reporting for funeral companies. DISRUPT Media is the creator of the FUNERAL Social Design Process which is the only full service social media strategy program crafted specifically for the funeral profession.

Go to to find out more about the services we offer. Our clients who are apart of our FUNERAL Social Design Process are seeing an increase in post reach and engagement of over 300%.

Ryan is also the founder of is the leading online daily publication for funeral professionals with a reader base of over 45,000 of the most elite and forward-thinking professionals in the profession. With Ryan has created a global community through an online platform allowing funeral professionals to Stay Current. Stay Informed and Stay Elite.

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