When Trey Ganem heard of the tragedy in Sutherland Springs, Texas, he drove two hours to the town to offer his condolences.
However, the businessman offered more than just his respects. Ganem creates custom casket designs that provide families with “the opportunity to celebrate their loved ones in the most personalized way.”
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As a result, Ganem is providing his services to the families of the victims of the First Baptist Church massacre completely free of charge.
According to NPR, he said:
“This is something we want to take off their hands. And hopefully it will be something for them to celebrate about.”
Instead of associating the caskets with death and sadness, Ganem added:
“Our caskets, you see the life of the person that’s in it.”
In order to build a custom coffin, you need to know the person.
NPR reported that in his showroom, there are “incredibly detailed coffins:”
[T]here’s one painted like the Texas state flag; another like a Louis Vuitton bag; and another still, shaped and painted like a bright red ’57 Chevy, complete with working headlights.
A shiny pink casket lies on the floor of the showroom. It’s meant for a 6-year-old victim of the shooting.
“Her dad just said, ‘That’s my princess.'”
Her final resting place will be a “princess casket.”
Tiffany Sublett, Ganem’s assistant, is taking the time to speak with the surviving family members, jotting down details to illustrate on the coffins. As a mother with another baby on the way, Sublett called the entire experience “emotional.”
Another couple, Maggie and Michael Rivera, drove from San Antonio to help Ganem. Maggie said:
“The first casket they gave us was a little 4-by-6 one, and in the corner over there, there’s the little toy from ‘Cars’ — Mater — and Mickey Mouse and that’s my son’s favorite. I just had to take a moment to sit back. It really puts things in perspective.”
Those helping hope that the caskets will lessen the burden on the mourners and allow them to “begin the long process of healing.”
Sara Vallone has been a writer and editor for the last four and a half years. A graduate of Ohio University, she enjoys celebrity news, sports, and articles that enhance people’s lives.
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