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COVID impacts on funeral traditions

"Roy's Funeral" by wickenden is licensed with CC BY-SA 2.0. To view a copy of this license, visit

One of the many industries changed by the coronavirus is the funeral industry.

Funeral workers may be considered frontline workers during the pandemic. In just ten months, COVID-19 has become the third leading cause of death in the United States, claiming more than 320-thousand lives.

Thomas Lynch is with Lynch and Sons Funeral Directors in southeast Michigan. 

He says requests for cremation have increased in the past 50-years. The coronavirus may change how families interact with the process. 

"I see cremation becoming more of an open, public ceremony more than a closed, private one. That’s a big societal change and a very good one to the extent that it meets people’s needs for bereavement and mourning practices."

Lynch says COVID restrictions have forced the funeral industry to focus more on the essential elements of a funeral, In his view, the corpse, the family, and the story of the loved one.