Many experienced cemetery & crematorium administrators will at one time or another have thought about or been directly involved in preparing disaster management plans. And I suspect most will have quickly realised that when it comes to death care it's the people who work at its frontline who are its most important resource. As this article on patch.com.demonstrates:
CENTER MORICHES, NY — For Steve Scerri, who runs the Mount Pleasant Cemetery in Center Moriches, the new coronavirus has changed life in ways that are almost impossible to voice.
"It's depressing, definitely," Scerri said.
Scerri has done his job diligently for 37 years but he hasn't experienced something like the coronavirus, which has rocked the funeral industry. Things have been frantic as he struggles to keep up with an ever-mounting death toll not only in Suffolk County, which County Executive Steve Bellone called the "epicenter" of the coronavirus nationwide, but in New York City, too.
Scerri is handling the cremations and burials of the dead from Manhattan to Montauk and all across Long Island, "because all the other crematoriums are backed up two weeks."
"I've seen (a) 100 percent increase," Scerri said of cremations and burials.
Before coronavirus, Scerri was handling about 120 cremations and burials a month; now, that numbers hovers around 500. He's working long days and nights to keep up with the endless march of death.
Extra precautions must be taken.