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LAS VEGAS (FOX5) -- Funerals are a time for family and loved ones to come together and console each other with hugs and kisses. But right now, just like most traditions, funeral services are different.

"It’s not the normalcy we’re use to," said Funeral Director Raymond Giddens Jr. Giddens is used to working with families during their darkest times at Giddens Memorial Chapel. However, he said those conversations are even harder now.

"We already feel their pain but we feel extra pain now because of the extra details we have to share with them as far as dos and do-nots," said Giddens. 

Last week, Giddens said he helped family and friends say goodbye to Christian Holliday. He said he had to make several last minute changes. 

The family wanted a public service with 500 people. Hundreds of those loved ones, in and out-of-state, couldn't go.

"It’s very heartbreaking to share that news with them ... We just indicated that this would be a private service for the family. We did extend the visitation. We asked that ten people would come in at a time. That they kept that 6 feet distance," said Giddens. 

Giddens said he sees people showing up to funerals with gloves and masks, sitting two rows behind each other. Some family and friends are even sitting in their own home, watching the service through a live stream. Giddens said that's what Holliday's family did last week. 

"They were able to be a part of the service by watching and then type information to the family and send hearts," said Giddens. 

Giddens said his staff tries to make most arrangements over the phone.

If someone passes at home, his staff shows up in full personal protective equipment.  While none of this is ideal for families, Raymond said holding off on services for a few weeks or even a month is an option.

"People can wait if requested. If they are passing from COVID-19, I believe they are asking that we do interment as quickly as possible," said Giddens. 

Giddens said it’s always best to have a plan, now more than ever. It makes things easier on family but its also helps with planning from a distance.

Copyright 2019 KVVU (KVVU Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved

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