The best education I ever received was at the age of 15 when I began working at McKenzie and Blundy Funeral Home as a general assistant. This position was offered to me by Donald McKenzie, then president and founder of the funeral home. Don taught me the value of work well done, as well as many other life skills such as compassion, ambition, determination, and empathy for others.
I spent my days at McKenzie and Blundy washing cars, tending to the gardens, and painting the exterior of the home itself, which was built by Alexander Mackenzie, the second Prime Minister of Canada. Don and his son Grant, then Vice-President, were passionate about making their funeral home a place of comfort for those in a time of grief. That meant perfect lawns and gardens, comfortable furniture and surroundings, and immaculate cleanliness. It also meant showing heart felt sympathy and support for anyone, regardless of culture or faith, who turned to them for help at a difficult time of bereavement.
Over the years I stayed close to McKenzie and Blundy Funeral Home. Sometimes it was to attend a funeral of someone close to me. Sometimes it was in the capacity of a pallbearer for a grieving family I did not know personally. Regardless, it was always something very important to me deep inside; the recognition and celebration of a life lived, and expression of both gratitude for that life and grief in the loss we feel when someone dies and departs this life. It matters not if the deceased was five days old or 100 years young; it was a life lived and a life to be recognized and remembered. This is the education I received while washing cars and painting walls at McKenzie and Blundy Funeral Home.
The service of the McKenzie & Blundy Funeral Home exceeded my greatest expectations when I needed them most. A team of dedicated professionals all showed caring, friendliness and the warm comfort of consolation and encouragement during the most difficult year of my life. The unexpected gestures of guidance and remembrance during that time made me feel that I shall indeed find peace and acceptance of my loss, and so to each of them I owe a great deal of gratitude and appreciation.
Too many times in these days people complain about anything and everything.
Today I would like to take the time to compliment an employee of yours, Dale Patterson.
Our mother, Genevieve Cox, passed away on Feb. 28, 2011 at Vision Nursing Home. A few days beforehand, I called a few funeral homes, and when I spoke to Dale he was the only one who was warm, helpful and informative. I felt he was more interested in people than in making money. He helped us through difficult arrangements and relieved us of the burden of worry.
He understood our humour and our grief.
Thanks to Dale both of our parents are interred together at Resurrection Mausoleum. What a wonderful representative for your company.
I just wanted to let you now how very satisfied we were with our dealings with McKenzie Blundy.
Sincerely, Frances Frauley (The Cox Family)
—The Cox Family
McKenzie & Blundy Funeral Home has been caring for our family members for many years as you say, - before, during and after death. Our most recent experience was the death of my mother. We had discussed and made plans for this previously, but discussions and reality are very different things. My mother was 95 when she died, a wonderful loving person who deserved the best in life and in death. Walking into McKenzie & Blundy to make the final preparations and arrange the funeral was difficult, - but the warmth, support and compassion received from the staff was excellent. Nothing was too much trouble, and everything was taken care of in such a respectful and dignified manner. You are all exceptional people, thank you so much for helping us through a very difficult time.
Dear Katherine and staff of McKenzie and Blundy Funeral Home:
On behalf of the Hodgson family, we would like to thank you for all of your care, concern and support during our most difficult time.
The employees of McKenzie and Blundy Funeral Home are very knowledgeable, and they took the time needed to guide us through all the arrangements.
We found that all the staff went above and beyond in answering questions and making recommendations, making the difficult decisions we had to make a little easier.
McKenzie and Blundy offers many unique extra services, such as, an angel pin which was personally given to each family member in memory of our loved one, the on-line condolences for people out of town, the memorial tree planting service, the video tribute which provides us with a lasting memory of our loved one, and the after care where you meet one on one with a staff member who guides you through the process of filling out all the necessary paper work needed by different government agencies.
Again, thank you for all you did.
—The Hodgson Family