The York Casket Co., one of the nation's leading death-care providers, sells a solid ash casket with a gloss finish that enables funeral-goers to write with markers on the outside without their words running or smearing. York anticipates the casket will be a "big seller in the inner cities," and is aimed at "the teenage market," according to a York salesman quoted in a national magazine article.
Does this casket have appeal to families of youths killed in gang violence? MARY REESE BOYKIN spoke to area funeral home administrators and a York representative about the viability--and good taste--of marketing such a casket.
Manager of corporate communications, York Group Inc., Houston
York would get requests for a casket that could be written on. A grandfather had passed, and the family wanted a casket that allowed the grandchildren to say their goodbyes. In another case, a member of an artists' colony had passed away. There was a request for a casket that fellow artists could draw and paint on. We had unfinished caskets that could fulfill these requests. But it wasn't until late 1996 that York introduced a finished casket--York Expressions Caskets--that could be written on without the worry of dripping ink. Grief counselors have indicated that writing, as an expression of grief, helps.