HARO — Funerals

I’m on this e-mail list for HARO –Help a Reporter Out. A guy called Peter Shankman used to receive many requests from reporters and writers for sources for stories they were planning to writer. Shankman started compiling these requests in to dailiy HAROs. He lists the type of information needed (eco-gardeners in New England to provide insight in to plant-growing techniques) with cotnact information. HARO subscribers read these e-mails and decide if they can help the reporter. The catch. You have to have specific information to add, not “me, too” or “vagueness.” I responded to one about maternity clothes, which morphed in to a post on typeamom.net on maternity clothes.

Here’s a response I did today on moving funeral services:

A. I attended the funeral of the 80+ mother of a very dear friend outside Baltimore, MD. My friend had watched her mother decline over the last 5 years due to hip problems, strokes, and some lack of cognitive function. My friend made sure her mother had the best care at home and at the assisted living facilty, then nursing home/hospital.

The funeral was in the interdenominational chapel at her mom’s assisted living facility. Two things are notable about the funeral:

1. My friend and her family are Irish Catholic. My friend grew up in a rowhouse in a Catholic section of Baltimore. At the funeral there were about 8 ladies from the Ancient Order of Hibernians — the Hibernian Sisters. The ladies wore dark jackets and skirts with a sash made up of the colors of the Irish flag; white, green, and orange. The ladies marched in with the coffin, sat 4 to a side in the church, then marched out in military formation, kind of like an honor guard. My friend’s mother had been a Hibernian Sister.

2. My friend who is in her 50s was very close to her mother…best friends. She
gave a moving eulogy to her mom…whom she referred to as “her little Irish
mother.” She told many anecdotes of her mother’s frugality. My friend named
every one of the people attending the funeral who were from the “old beighborhood.” She included an anecdote about each one. The times she grew up in were tough, but friends helped each other out back then.

B. About 4 years ago a young firefighter/National Guardsman from my community was killed in Iraq. His funeral, at a church adjacent to my children’s elementary school, was attended by servicepeople, two State delegates, and local businesspeople. The funeral cortege passed from the church to the elementary school next door and
finished at the fire station located in the road beside the elementary school. Part of the procession was a group of Hell’s Angels who accompany funerals of military people. A friend sent out an e-mail to get local people to line the procession route from the school to the fire station. It was a moving sendoff for someone who gave everything for his country.

You can sign up to receive the HARO e-mails at: www.petershankman.com You can follow Peter on twitter at: www.twitter.com/skydiver

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