While most high school students take after school jobs in restaurants or car washes to put themselves through college, Michael Godsey started working the night shift in a morgue.
From there Michael developed a real passion for his profession.
“The profession always stayed with me because it is a people serving business – helping those in need during what often is the most troubling time in their life. I pursued this career as a personal interest when seeking a way to help people. It is personally comforting to me to assist individuals in the creation and implementation of a fitting tribute for their loved one. Whether the arrangement is simply the implementation of immediate cremation with scattering at sea to a more elaborate tribute involving video tributes, musical performers, many orators, and hosting hundreds in attendance, it is always a role I cherish and honor to achieve.”
Michael is the Owner of Fond Remembrance Cremation Services located in Orange County, California. The service is all-encompassing, involving anything from memorial tributes to cremation and burial services.
“We are a Neighborly Funeral Establishment springing to the privilege and opportunity to serve. We make the time to spend with our clients – and to serve local families. We feel that when everything is centrally coordinated, our customers remain in control and secure in the knowledge that the people who are assuming the ultimate responsibility of their loved one are their neighbors, who care about quality, who care about service, and most of all, who care about them.”
“We excel at assisting the bereaved through the mourning process. We have developed a multi-step system to create comfort by providing unique ways to capture, share, and preserve memories of life.”
With over 40 years of experience in the funeral industry, Michael has always been able to focus on the positives that come with his job.
“The best part about my job is watching the expressions on client’s faces change from uncertainty and high stress, to comfort knowing that their loved one will be cared for exactly as they intend for it to be. Often we can physically watch an emotional burden lift via body-language, and progressively hear the stress in their voices diminish by the words they choose when communicating throughout the arrangement process.”
People choose to commemorate the life of loved ones, and grieve in many different ways. Dealing with grief is never easy, but Michael believes that funerals play an important role in the grieving process.
“Like many events, such as a wedding, birthday, or an anniversary, a commemorative event, even in its most simplistic state, satisfies the basic human need to ritualize death – an important initial step in the process of mourning. Mourning, by way of a ritual, grants survivor family and friends a time to support each other, to share memories, and an opportunity for them to celebrate the survivor’s life or the life of another, and to come into alignment with the separation.”
Michael acknowledges that there is no one-way approach to funeral services. In order to respectfully engage with his clients, Michael needs to take several additional factors into account.
“We provide answers and options few others may offer. It’s important to acknowledge any religious factors that come into play. We remain elastic to respect all faiths, customs, traditions and lifestyles. We also must consider economics. In today’s market, many people feel that their loved one really would not want them to spend an average of $7,500 on a funeral when on the other hand, cremation can range from $800-$1,200. Perhaps the most important factor is understanding our client’s desire for a wide range of memorialization options that uniquely commemorate a loved one from keepsake jewelry and urns, to placement in a columbarium or cemetery, to lawful scattering at locations meaningful to the decedent. New choices for final disposition have entered the market such as green burials that offer a natural solution of all biodegradable elements and the introduction of kit caskets that are available online – so those are now factors too.”
Michael believes that the funeral industry needs to change in order to adapt to changing times where communication needs to be as streamlined as possible, so one year ago he decided to take Fond Remembrances online.
“Too often the industry mandates respondents to travel to their facility to make arrangements. No one relishes the inevitable trip to a local mortuary to discuss the making of funeral arrangements before or after a death occurs. The experience of meeting with an undertaker when the death of a loved one has occurred requires the recall and recording of information needed for the director to complete the necessary forms and legal documents and requires answers to many decisions.”
“I wanted to change all of that by introducing a new approach when seeking funeral final-need arrangements. We developed an efficient and effective process for online funeral arranging. It allows those who seek this need, both before and at the time of need, to do so in a way that enables them to determine for their self, in a private and respectful way that which they feel be most appropriate to commemorate the life of a loved one.”
“All arrangements can be done online in the privacy of the client’s home, without any sales pitch or having to step foot into a funeral home. Since our overhead expenditures are minimal, we can offer quality service the client expects at affordable prices.”
As Fond Remembrances began to grow, Michael was brought to Yondo via a recommendation from Weebly.
“I am just getting started with Yondo, I like the ease of posting an upcoming webinar, and the count-down the posting provides when accepting the invitation to join.”
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