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STATEWIDE — Losing a family member or a friend is never easy, and because of the coronavirus outbreak, it’s becoming more challenging.

Limits are being placed on gatherings. The CDC is recommending a gathering of no more than 10 people, meaning funeral homes are having to rethink how many people can be in attendance.

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Steve Tiffany, the manager of the Usher Funeral Home in Indianapolis, says they’ve had to make a few changes to better protect the families they serve and their staff.

“Families are just having very small [services], immediate family only, and then planning a larger service, or celebration of life, once this passes.”

Funeral services at their facility, a church, or cemetery can’t exceed 10 to 12 people, the same goes for visitations at their funeral home.

They are working to give people online access to funeral services, and guests can sign an online register book and leave their condolences.

“We just realized with an ink pen sitting there how many different hands touch it.”

He says when something like the coronavirus happens you begin to realize the small things.

“I’ve been doing this almost 30 years now, and never encountered anything like it,” Tiffany said. “I do know that myself and all my colleagues are trying to meet the needs of a family in a difficult circumstance.”

He says as a caregiver it’s disappointing to him that during this time not all people will be given a chance to say goodbye, but he’s trying to work with families to meet their needs while staying within the CDC guidelines during the COVID-19 pandemic.