Funerals are occasions where we want to say goodbye to our loved ones in a dignified manner. It is also a highly emotional time as the bereaved are trying to come to terms with their loss. However, sometimes things happen at funerals that can leave people in shock or downright furious.
A story that took the media by storm in 2014 was that of a funeral parlour in Grahamstown that ordered its employees to saw the legs off of the 33-year old man who was “too tall to fit into the coffin.” Whilst the court hearing was held, more cases were brought forward about corpse mutilations done by the funeral parlour.
A marching confusion
When a great tree has fallen, it is expected that a dignified funeral will be held to showcase the magnitude of the life they once lived. However, things took a turn for the worst when the prolific business mogul, Dr.Maponya, was laid to rest earlier this year. A viral video showed senior members of the police force marching in different directions, stopping to negotiate which is the right way, and still not getting it right, which left many horrified.
No one would expect that at the memorial of one of the country’s greatest leaders would dissemble into confusion and embarrassment due to one sign language interpreter. While Thamsanqa Jantjie interpreted for various world leaders at Nelson Mandela memorial in 2013, a few hand gestures caught the eye of the population.
Complaints from the sign language community that he was a fake and saying things that did not make sense left a trail of chaos on social media. Jantjie later revealed to news organisations that he had suffered a schizophrenic episode in which he had seen angels, and that he had panicked due to the heavily armed forces that surrounded him.
A funeral attendant punching a corpse
The Orlando police in the United States of America received an assault case where one of the funeral attendees walked into an open casket funeral ceremony and proceeded to punch the corpse. It remains unknown as to what may have upset the funeral attendant and caused him to punch a corpse.
Selfies at a funeral
Social media has allowed us to capture moments that can be kept as memories. It is a great way to share those memories with our followers and loved ones, but sometimes things go too far. Taking selfies at a funeral is a trend that seems to be increasing at funerals worldwide, with people even putting a hashtag such as #Funeral or #Corpsies.
Some have even gone as far as doing the mannequin challenge at a funeral where people freeze in a position of their choosing and someone records the challenge.
At most, we aim to put our loved ones to rest in dignity which is why life and funeral cover are essential. However, it seems that funerals do sometimes bring out humour and at times the worst in our behaviour.