Funeral Industry News

Funeral Director Reacts to Handling First Walmart Casket, You Might Be Surprised

December 22, 2009

Ryan Thogmartin is the CEO of DISRUPT Media | Follower of Christ | Husband | Father | Entrepreneur | Host of #DISRUPTu! and #FUNERALnationtv | Lover of Skittles DISRUPT Media is a social media content agency that focuses on storytelling for funeral companies. We use real stories to build creative strategies that achieve actual business goals.

Funeral Director Reacts to Handling First Walmart Casket, You Might Be Surprised

imageLast week I posted an article that contained the dialogue I had with a representative from the Walmart media relations? team (Is Walmart Selling Any Caskets? I Called to Find Out, Read The Dialogue). I posted in the article that I have not spoken with anyone (funeral director) who has had a family purchase a casket from Walmart.

Shortly after posting the article I received a call from someone in the industry. He informed me that one of the funeral homes in their area had a family purchase a casket from Walmart.

Following our conversation my friend passed along to me the contact information for Jeff Herington, from Herington Funeral Home, in Kansas City. I placed a call to Jeff yesterday. What he said may surprise you.

The family had already ordered the casket before they went to the funeral home to make arrangements, so Jeff never had the opportunity to show them what the funeral home had to offer in the way of caskets. If the casket were not already purchased Jeff would have shown them a casket the funeral home had on the floor that would match the price they were looking for.

Jeff said everything went smooth with the delivery; the casket arrived on time and was not damaged.

When I asked Jeff about the look, he replied by saying,? I am not going to bash Walmart or the manufacturer, I don?t want to do that, but the fit and finish of the casket was not what we are used to.? He went on to say ?the family was fine with the casket and very proud of their purchase, but the fit and finish were not what we are used to.?

Once the casket had arrived Jeff did say he was able to show the family a casket they had in stock that matched the price of the Walmart casket. When the family saw what Jeff had to offer he said, ?the wind was taken from their sail a little, but they were still happy with their purchase?.

Jeff told me that obviously if the casket would have been damaged or the wrong color then he would have had something to really be upset about, but everything went very smooth and in the end the family was very pleased with the service they received from the funeral home and Walmart, and that is what really matters.

I think in the end what made this experience a pleasant one for Jeff was the fact that the family was happy with they product they had purchased. Obviously, if they would not have been it would have been a tougher situation for Jeff. I don?t doubt that as more funeral directors experience the ?Walmart casket?, not every story is going to be as smooth as this one.

If anyone else has had to deal with a Walmart casket, please share your experience and story with us.

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