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Meet Keefe Chesmore of Chesmore Funeral Home in Hopkinton & Holliston

Today we’d like to introduce you to Keefe Chesmore.

Thanks for sharing your story with us Keefe. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
The Chesmore Funeral Home was founded in 1941 by my great-uncle, Henry A. Chesmore. It operated out of Henry’s parent’s home on Franklin Street in Holliston. In 1941, Henry was drafted and served with the U.S. Army in WWII until 1945. While deployed, Henry’s parents were given a permit to run the business in his absence. In 1948, the funeral home moved to its current location at 854 Washington Street in Holliston. My father, Robert Chesmore (Henry’s nephew) began working with his Uncle Henry in the funeral business at the age of 12. In 1978, he opened the Robert L. Chesmore Funeral Home of Hopkinton on Hayden Rowe St.; where it is still located today. Henry retired in 1995 after 53 years of service and my father purchased the Holliston funeral home from his Uncle Henry. At that time, he renovated and expanded the Holliston facility. I grew up in the family business and worked alongside my father for several years. In January 2009, I became owner and president of both the Holliston and Hopkinton funeral homes when my father, Bob retired.

My wife Andrea, a former teacher, took on the role of Family Care Assistant for our business. She works with families to write obituaries, creates the memorial videos, among many other things.

Has it been a smooth road?
The work of a funeral director is physically and emotionally demanding, but we are in this business because we want to help families during difficult times. It truly is more of a calling…it’s not anything you will succeed at without truly having had that call. An average funeral requires about 50 hours of staff time from initial call to completion.

So let’s switch gears a bit and go into the Chesmore Funeral Home story. Tell us more about the business.
While most funeral homes offer the same services, it is the manner in which they are handled that makes the difference, We do not pressure people into doing what we want or buying high-end caskets and vaults. It is their time of loss and we can guide them, but it is always their choice to make. We accommodate families in any way that is appropriate.

How do you think the industry will change over the next decade?
More and more families are opting for a cremation over burial. Cosmetology techniques have drastically changed over the years, and we use the most modern techniques, including airbrushing. We offer families memorial videos, which are becoming increasingly popular. The videos are shown during the funeral services and families leave with copies of the video to keep.

Many families are also requesting that their deceased loved ones be buried in more casual clothes that reflect their personalities. We have many whose families prefer their loved ones be buried in their favorite sport’s team attire or more casual clothing rather than suit & tie.

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