Local funeral homes adapt to new mitigations and rising COVID levels

Funeral home events have been limited to ten people in Illinois and 15 in Iowa
Published: Nov. 23, 2020 at 10:36 PM CST
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QUAD CITIES (KWQC) - Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker and Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds have both rolled out new statewide mitigations in recent days in hopes of slowing the spread of COVID-19. The mitigations on both sides limit gathering sizes, including funeral home events.

For Trimble Funeral Home Funeral Director Reid Trimble in Moline and McGinnis-Chambers Funeral Home Funeral Director David Chambers in Bettendorf, both expected the restrictions.

“I feel like we expected (them) to be coming as they were cutting down on the different regions,” Trimble said.

“I was accepting and understanding, not alarmed, not distressed, I think it’s in the best interest of everybody,” Chambers said.

Even family members understand why the restrictions are in place.

“I’m finding that the families I speak with are understanding and accepting,” Chambers said.

“One of the things that surprised me the most is, in a good way, is how understanding people are,” Trimble said.

Although the challenges still remain for those who’ve lost a loved one to COVID.

“Lot of cases they haven’t been able to see their loved one, and that’s tragic having to wave through the windows or I’ve heard stories of zoom calls and facetime mom to say goodbye and that’s really the tragic story,” Trimble said.

“‘Dad had to die alone, we couldn’t go there and hold his hand, we couldn’t be there to support him,’ like I said before, we have a tough, tough time made even tougher,” Chambers said.

“And not being able to have funeral services is horrible, but not being able to say goodbye and be there with your loved one as they’re taking their last breaths is very tragic,” Trimble said.

Trimble also said the Illinois restrictions make it that much harder to grieve.

“Limiting it to 25 even in a larger family is doable, to ten, really affects the decision making for the family,” he said.

Trimble mentioned that families have not only lost loved ones to COVID, but have lost seniors to COVID restrictions that cause extreme loneliness.

“When they (seniors) no longer have that (social life), they lose their zest for life, I think we’ve had several deaths that the individual would still be here and thriving had this not happened,” he said, “Even thought they never got it (COVID).”

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