Cardboard coffins marked with COVID, families asked to collect ashes brought to cars by staff in masks and no more viewings: Inside a Maryland crematorium facing the new coronavirus reality

Saturday, April 18, 2020
By Paul Martin

Funeral homes and crematoria have seen a surge in business in recent weeks
One crematorium in Maryland is reporting an increase of 30% due to COVID-19
Families are no longer allowed to gather for a funeral service due to social distancing guidelines
Just a couple of family members are allowed in briefly to check the identity
Crematoria are helping out those in other states who are overwhelmed
The virus has reshaped the way funerals are conducted and how families grieve

18 April 2020

In the past three weeks the owners of a crematorium in Maryland have seen an increase of 30% as a result of the coronavirus.

As the pandemic has slowly taken hold, so has the number of deaths increased and the numbers of bodies arriving for a final farewell.

The owners of Maryland Cremation services, Dorota Marshall and her husband Sean, say that because of the risks, they can no longer allow viewings of their loves ones before they are finally cremated.

Instead, instead of a funeral ceremony the crematorium only allows brief identification visits whereby families can identify bodies before returning to pick up the ashes of their loved ones, outside the office whilst remaining in their cars.

The bodies continue to come and demand is so high the Marshall’s business has even agreed to help out a New York crematorium, which is completely backed up with overflow.

With coronavirus victims dying in quarantine and in hospitals, more and more are being left to be buried or cremated away from grieving relatives.

The infection has struck ancient rituals to honor the dead and comfort the bereaved, which have had to be cut short or abandoned for fear of spreading the virus further.

The Rest…HERE

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