Though I have had a small hand and say in making funeral arrangements, I have not had the opportunity of having to find a mortuary nor have considered every financial expect. Before either of my parents had passed, there needed to be a record of what funeral home to contact should they expire. My dad lived out his final days at Cottonwood Hospital in Murray, Utah. Ironically, he had also been born there (or so I was told) but at that time it had been called Cottonwood Maternity Ward and wasn't the full blown hospital where he had died.Mom had used a local mortuary as a contact I’m guessing because it was familiar territory as it had been used by other members of our ward. Before mom passed, Corey had made arrangements for Premier Funeral – though none of us had heard of it before, it really does seem the most economical way to go.
Premier doesn’t offer a chapel or a show room in which members can walk around and look at caskets. They offer a catalogue – which I suppose doesn’t go over well with some people, but Corey and I were fine with it. Premier has a lot to offer – for one thing the body is embalmed right away – at least where it is possible. (autopsy would be an exception)
Jeanie was already gone when the paramedics arrived. Possibly before she fell- or why she was falling. Her mother said that seven clots had been found in her lung(s) and not just one. I don’t know what shade she was when the paramedics arrived or how pale she must have gotten in the morgue. It feels a bit morbid wondering.
I was not impressed with the makeup job - but I have no idea what of Jeanie's facial condition when she arrived to the mortuary. Perhaps they had done a marvelous job with the "canvas" given - I just didn't see that. Mommy and Daddy had looked so natural, so peaceful, as though they were sleeping. Jeanie looked like a corpse – like in a really low budget movie when everything looks fake. It appeared that she had jaundice underneath the make-up. It was hard seeing her like that.
Biff had never been involved with any plans concerning funerals – except when we had asked him to be a pall bearer at my mom’s. But that was the extent of it. He had never gone to look for a casket or a burial plot. I’m sure the funeral home they went through was the same one his in-laws had used when they had buried their other two children. It was right next to – perhaps even part of the cemetery. I think Biff just went along with what they wanted. What did he know? They had been through it before. Roland and I have both gone through it, but we weren’t there. We weren’t involved with the decisions or give advice or hold our son’s hand.
I don’t know that his in-laws would have felt comfortable using Premier as they had the viewing in one location and the funeral in another. The mortuary was in a familiar place where family and loved ones had already gathered. They would have had to make arrangements for another chapel with Premier. But I think they would have saved a tremendous amount of cost.
My son, Randy, had set up a fund for Biff and his daughter – a plea to help pay for expenses. The goal was to hit 5,000. 3,000 had been raised in eight days by 62 different people. I cried every time I would see donations being made. I know there were many who knew Jeanie personally, but still many that did not know her at all. Some hadn’t even known Biff for that matter, and that touched my heart. My nephew, Brian, was the first to contribute to the cause.
I don’t know how many chapels and "comfort" rooms the funeral home offered. I would guess at least seven. It felt as if there had been seven different viewings all scheduled for Sunday night. Perhaps there had only been four or five. We had to pass them all in order to get the room where Jeanie and family were waiting. The lines were long. I’m sure that is why they had put us at the end.
When mom died, we had her at the Relief Society room in the building where she attended church. We were there Friday night and the mortuary took her away and brought her back the following morning and then we moved into the chapel. Premier had driven her back and forth. I'm not knocking the full blown centers but am in favor of using Premier again. They did an awesome job for us. I was overwhelmed by the amount of traffic involved with Jeanie. I never felt overwhelmed with Premier. The situation was always calm and respectful.