New York State Funeral Directors Association

Funeral Director Michael J. Cushman, Peg Cushman and sons Robert H. and William T. Cushman of Rhoney Funeral Home in Niagara Falls

Editor's Note: Peg Cushman previously shared this article with the Buffalo News

Death is a part of life that everyone experiences at one time or another; for my husband, my two sons and myself, it’s almost on a daily basis.

Most boys dream of becoming sport stars, astronauts or firefighters.

My husband’s aspiration was to become a funeral director.

Some of the late Dorothy "Bobbie" Joslin's Plants are Now Cared For by Her Daughter and Son-in-Law

My grandfather’s grandfather, Willard, sold things to people in his community – apples, lumber and other goods.

I’m not sure if he had a store at his farm or whatnot, I just know he kept records of what he sold and who he sold it to because I have a couple of the small ledgers he used for jotting down details.

Like most of the family history stuff I keep, they’re all locked up in fireproof containers.

Friend consoling a friend

Talking to someone who has just lost a loved one is never easy.

In fact, many people avoid the situation by staying away or sending a generic card. They are afraid of saying the wrong thing.

While there is no one right way to offer condolences, there are a few mistakes well-meaning people often make.

Learn from others so you don’t make the same errors.

Video: Slaves No More

New York's Capital Region honors, re-buries Colonial-era slaves. Found by accident in an unmarked cemetery, scientists pinpointed their African origin and the community held a wake and funeral.

SympathyNotes Facebook

SympathyNotes

SympathyNotes is written to stimulate discussion of death and grief. Opinions do not reflect the views of NYSFDA.

Connect with SympathyNotes

FB Blue    Twitter Blue

SympathyNotes is copyrighted but may be reproduced with attribution. For reprint permission, please contact Ed Munger.