Stuffed Hearses & a History Mystery | 4M #131

ENJOY Funeral Industry News Morticians' Monday Morning Mashup March 27, 2024
4M 131

Stuffed Hearses & a History Mystery | 4M #131

Welcome to the hundred-and-thirty-first edition of Morticians’ Monday Morning Mashup, 4M #131, where we’ll serve up bite-sized, easily-digestible nuggets of the deathcare news you need to crush conversations in the week ahead. Bon appetit!

It’s happening!

Just one month after the groundbreaking (pun intended) inaugural TerraCon Terramation convention in Tacoma, Washington, it seems you can’t read any publication without hearing about natural organic reduction … and rightly so. Although only seven states have legalized the process (and Delaware may become number eight this week!), many, many more are considering it, and folks in the others are making their interest known. Here are just a few of the stories we found last week:

Steal this idea!

Kudos to Care Care Funeral & Cremation Specialists of Calcutta, Ohio, who last week hosted their first stuff-a-hearse and vendor/food truck fair. Attendees were asked to fill the hearse with non-perishable food donations, which were then donated to local food banks. The funeral home also donated $1 to local charities for every individual or business that participated. We love this idea, and think it’s an excellent way to interact with the communities you serve.

Curiouser and curiouser

Last week we shared the story of Truman Capote’s cremains — the sale of some of which was featured in the conclusion of FX’s Feud: Capote vs. the Swans. According to multiple sources, after Capote’s death in 1984, his cremains were divided between his former partner Jack Dunphy and his friend Joanne Carson, wife of The Tonight Show’s Johnny Carson. When Joanne Carson died in 2015, her portion of Capote’s cremains were auctioned by Julien’s auction house along with the remainder of her estate; they sold for $43,750 to an anonymous bidder. Our story caught the attention of a reader with personal knowledge of said cremains: the Westwood Memorial Park cemeterian from whom Mrs. Carson purchased a couch crypt for Capote’s cremains. He stated that Carson placed her portion of Capote’s cremains in the crypt after they were stolen from her home during a party (and mysteriously returned), and then her cremains joined his after her death…which means they weren’t auctioned after all? Or is it possible that Dunphy’s portion was either placed in the crypt or auctioned? The problem with the latter theory, though, is that it’s widely accepted that Dunphy’s and Capote’s ashes were comingled and scattered in a New York pond in 1994. We love a good mystery, but this one is a true head-scratcher.

We’ll see them in June

Jon and Carie Hallford of Return to Nature green funeral home in Penrose, Colorado, both of whom are currently out of jail on $100,000 bond each, won’t report to court for arraignment on 250 felony charges until June 2024. Last week a judge granted the three-month continuance based on the “substantial discovery” the defense is still receiving. Until then, the Hallfords are required to check-in with the court several times a week, abstain from drugs and alcohol, and wear ankle monitors, and they have surrendered their passports. Their jury trial is expected to begin in October.