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Opinion
Ben Schott

What Banks and Airlines Can Learn from Funeral Homes

Undertakers can’t afford not to be the kings of customer service.

The dead aren’t the only ones who deserve white-glove treatment.

The dead aren’t the only ones who deserve white-glove treatment.

Photographer: Paul Ratje/AFP via Getty Images

A few days ago the father of a dear friend died. Because he was of an age, and had been unwell for several years, his death was expected, yet still it was a shock — an emotional paradox that will be familiar to many who finally experience long-anticipated grief.

After discussing the injustice of his father surviving the worst waves of Covid but not living long enough to enjoy the fruits of our unlocking, my friend turned to the question of logistics. “It’s interesting,” he said. “They can get it right when they need to.” “Who is they?” I asked. “Funeral homes.”