I’m just young enough that the first Apollo mission rests in a vague place in my memory. I was traveling the day Neil Armstrong took those first steps and can only remember someone pointing to a television in the lobby and telling what the fuzzy black and white images meant.
But he and those that followed certainly made their mark in my childhood. I remember model rockets and “space” toys that my grandparents would bring back from Florida in those days and later I couldn’t get enough information about the Shuttle as they began to design and build that amazing machine.
So let me say thank you and god bless to the family and friends who supported Neil Armstrong and many like him who made the crazy dream of space travel emerge into my life and the lives of billions around the world.
May his passing provide that next level of determination we need to proceed with further explorations of the heavens.
Memorial information about Neil Armstrong can be found here.
It references a somewhat scholarly meeting of the Northwest Association for Theological Discussion, and two papers that were presented as a formal debate about current thinking related to Christian funeral ritual.
The material is somewhat technical and overall inconclusive, but I wanted to jot it down here perhaps for future reference.
Ed Defort, editor of The Director magazine was kind enough to run an editorial piece I wrote in the May 2012 issue. The Director is the monthly periodical produced by the National Funeral Directors Association.
I wrote the piece to speak to funeral service vendors and leaders but thought I would document it here as well for future reference. To date, it has generated more than the usual amount of buzz in the industry.
Editorial for The Director Magazine, May 2012
By: William “BT” Hathaway
Have you ever purchased a pair of hand measured, hand sewn, custom made dress shoes? Not specialized medical devices mind you, but normal shoes made for typical feet. Would you even know where to get measured if the desire suddenly hit you?
If not, then how many of your consumers buy custom made shoes which would cost them anywhere from $500.00 to a $1,000.00 per pair–or more? Continue reading →
What would you do if you had an infant who might not live to her second birthday? Many might get lost in sorrow. But this family has chosen a completely different path. They created a bucket list for their infant and have brought her out into the world to explore, creating memories as they go.
What if we understand death as a developmental stage — like adolescence or mid-life? Dr. Ira Byock is a leading figure in palliative care and hospice in the United States. He says we lose sight of “the remarkable value” of the time of life we call dying if we forget that it’s always a personal and human event, and not just a medical one. From his place on this medical frontier, he shares how we can understand dying as a time of learning, repair, and completion of our lives.
This is the lead paragraph from this week’s Speaking of Faith Program on APM, an entire radio hour devoted to end of life issues which some may find helpful to hear. Follow the link: Contemplating Mortality with Ira Byock
There’s a lot of misleading information out there regarding cremation services.
Years ago the Federal Trade Commission developed rules for funeral and cremation pricing. In the process they created a special category called “direct cremation” which has turned into a source of confusion for consumers as funeral homes have stripped away more and more customary services so that they can offer the lowest possible teaser price. In one extreme case, a funeral home publishes a price which does not include transportation of the deceased to the funeral home. This is perfectly “legal” because the rules don’t say what has to be included in the price, but it can be very misleading.
We do things differently at Hathaway. Over 120 years of service, we’ve learned to keep our prices straight forward and complete. This video is designed to explain the difference. If you have any other questions, please send an email we will do everything we can to help.
My family has adopted many innovations over the years to improve our quality of service. Here’s an example of our most recent innovation, an eBook designed with iBooks Author so that we can present prayer cards on an iPad. To the best of my knowledge, this is the first time iBooks Author has been used in funeral service.
My great grandfather began his “undertaking” in 1893 out of a little garage in Somerset, Massachusetts. Look past the young man (probably my grandfather as a teen) in the driveway and you’ll see the pitch of the roof to that garage still located on Riverside Avenue near the bottom of Luther Avenue.
Nearly 120 years of service from one neighbor to another. With a little luck and a lot of attention to detail, I hope we’ll serve for many more.