A Tennessee funeral home is drawing in bereaved customers by offering an unusual service — drive-through viewings.
Ryan Bernard, who opened the R. Bernard funeral home in Memphis with his family at the end of January, said the service is designed to be more convenient for families who are already facing the burden of losing a loved one.
“I got the idea from a funeral home out in California,” Bernard told WHBQ-TV. “I thought it was something new. I thought it would be neat to add to the Memphis area. Just to add something unique to our funeral home.”
Bernard said the drive-through viewings are offered for no extra charge to families who purchase a funeral package.
“Say a family has a visitation from 4 to 6. We would put their loved one in the drive-thru viewing area say around 1 o’clock and they will have a drive-thru viewing from 1 to 2:30,” Bernard told WATN-TV.
He said four families have used the drive-through option so far, and all of the feedback has been positive.
“We’ve been getting rave reviews. We’ve had people actually just pull up drive-thru just had a curiosity they didn’t even know the person who passed,” he said.
Bernard said guests pull up to a window, where they sign in on an iPad and then receive up to three minutes of viewing time.
“Some people, they don’t want to deal with the hassle, the chaos of a large funeral; parking, especially with inclement weather, so that was an extra convenience for those,” Bernard said.
“You’ll be surprised how many people who just can’t stomach coming into a funeral home. They’re scared so it offers convenience to those,” Bernard said.
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