WEYBURN - A milestone anniversary was recently celebrated by a pillar business in the community. Fletcher Funeral Chapel and Cremation Services celebrated their 30th year as a business during a community barbecue in their parking lot on Sept. 8.
Myron Fletcher shared some of his history serving as a young apprentice in the funeral industry, and eventually became a licensed funeral director and embalmer and then managed Fletcher Funeral Chapel.
“I started in the business in 1972. At that time, I worked at a funeral home that shared the same building as the ambulance services. So I was involved in both the ambulance services and the funeral services for a number of years,” said Fletcher.
He noted that since at that time the funeral home had cars with stretchers in them, that they ended up sharing a building with the ambulance services. Myron even taught EMT programs for nine years.
Myron received his license as a funeral director in 1982, and 10 years later had the opportunity to name the funeral home Fletcher Funeral Chapel and took over the management of the business.
“Our service goal as a business was to help during a great time of need. It is a huge responsibility to look after a loved one, and help the family during their time of grief,” said Fletcher.
It was also important to Myron to be involved in supporting the community. “We wanted to support and keep the community thriving,” said Fletcher.
Both Myron and his wife, June, have been involved in different community organizations in Weyburn throughout their lives. Weyburn was the place they wanted to raise their children, and they both have a lifetime of service as community members.
“As far as I am concerned, any business should support the community,” added Fletcher.
Myron feels very grateful for the staff that served at Fletcher Funeral Chapel over the years. “For the majority of people who are in this type of work, they are very faithful, and there is meaning behind it. They are people persons, who have both commitment and dedication to their job.”
In 2008, due to medical concerns, Myron retired as manager and Tamara Seghers took over the position.
“It was a great help to have Tamara there to take over. I was extremely proud of her and give her a lot of credit for stepping into the management role, as she is also busy at home with a young family,” said Fletcher.
The community barbecue also celebrated Tamara’s 20th career anniversary as a funeral embalmer. She graduated from the Weyburn Comprehensive School in 2001, and moved to Calgary where she attended Mount Royal College.
She gained her funeral embalmer license in 2002, and stayed in Alberta for a year during her internship. Tamara returned to Weyburn in 2003, worked at Insurance Funeral for a year, and then started her career at Fletcher Funeral Chapel in 2004.
“I have always wanted a career that helps people,” said Seghers.
Through her career, Tamara has appreciated the fact that she gets to “walk with families during a difficult time, and to help navigate them through their grief.”
“There are families who we work with a second or third time, and they trust us because we have built that relationship with them previously.”
Tamara shared that every family she sees provides a different experience for her. No two families are the same and they all have a different way of handling their loss and grief. She said that this has always been a learning experience for her and provides a new challenge every day.
She also appreciates her staff, who have supported her and continue to do so daily. “Honestly we have great staff. They are so reliable, and always willing to take on new roles every day.”
Maintaining an active presence in the community will always be a priority, as Fletcher Funeral Chapel established this concept in its beginnings.
“As the oldest funeral chapel business in the city, we have become a pillar for the community, and it is important to give back to the community. We support the Family Place, free swims, and many local hockey and baseball teams.”
Tamara has always felt it was important for the public to feel comfortable with this service. “It is important to me that everyone who needs our services, right from adults to the children, feel comfortable coming into our building.”
The community barbecue was a huge success, with many other long-term employees volunteering during the day.
“We received so many gifts, warm appreciation and recognition from other local businesses and organizations during the day,” said Seghers. “We are extremely proud to have served this community in the past and look forward to being able to serve Weyburn and area for many years to come.”