The National Funeral Directors Association Recognizes Carved In Memory with the 2019 NFDA Innovation Award

Funeral Industry News Funeral Industry Press Releases NFDA October 28, 2019

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The National Funeral Directors Association Recognizes Carved In Memory with the 2019 NFDA Innovation Award

Brookfield, Wis. – The National Funeral Directors Association (NFDA) presented Carved in Memory with the 2019 Innovation Award during the association’s International Convention & Expo, which is being held October 27 through 30 in Chicago, Ill. The first runner-up is Mortuary Lift Company and the second runner-up is Coasson.

Carved in Memory is a new innovation in memorializing a loved one. The company takes a sample of a loved one’s handwriting – the love note from a late husband, a birthday card from a sibling or grandma’s famous pie recipe – and creates a 3-D wood carving that replicates the individual’s handwriting. This piece of art is an heirloom that families can cherish forever.

The Stepper by Mortuary Lift Company is an electric dolly designed to transport human remains. It ascends and descends staircases and effortlessly maneuvers around stairway landings, furniture and narrow hallways, eliminating muscle strain and back injury.

A leading-edge vehicle and system for the dignified bearing of human remains, the Coasson funeral coach offers the heritage of a caisson, with the luxury of a coach. The Coasson is immune to model changes and offers unmatched visibility of a casket or urn ark during the procession and is easily towed by any fleet vehicle.

More information about the winning products by Carved in Memory, Mortuary Lift Company and Coasson can be found online at

Established in 2009, the NFDA Innovation Award recognizes and promotes creativity, innovation and excellence among funeral service suppliers and vendors.

Earlier this year, funeral service vendors and suppliers had an opportunity to submit a product or service that became commercially available after January 1, 2018, for consideration in the 2019 NFDA Innovation Award competition. A distinguished panel of judges evaluated the 18 entries on the criteria of originality and uniqueness; quality and design; and practicality and sustainability. The judges were: Matthew R. Bailey, B.C. Bailey Funeral Home, Wallingford, Conn.; Amy Cunningham, Fitting Tribute Funeral Service, Brooklyn, N.Y.; Amie Deluca, Agency H5, Chicago, Ill.; Welton Hong, Ring Ring Marketing, Las Vegas, Nev.; Nicole Krause, Krause Funeral Homes & Cremation Service, Inc., Milwaukee, Wis.; Patrick T. Lanigan, Patrick T. Lanigan Funeral Home, East Pittsburgh, Penn.; Timothy Mcloone, Joseph A. Fluehr III Funeral Home, Inc., Richboro, Penn.; Leili McMurrough, Worsham College of Mortuary Science, Wheeling, Ill.; and Carol Roth, former judge on the TBS reality show America’s Greatest Makers.

NFDA is the world’s leading and largest funeral service association representing more than 20,000 individual members who represent nearly 11,000 funeral homes in the United States and 49 countries around the world. NFDA is the trusted leader, beacon for ethics and the strongest advocate for the profession. NFDA is the association of choice because it offers funeral professionals comprehensive educational resources, tools to manage successful businesses, guidance to become pillars in their communities and the expertise to foster future generations of funeral professionals. NFDA is headquartered in Brookfield, Wis., and has an office in Washington, D.C. For more information, visit