I would like to say a heartfelt 'Thank You' for the lovely funeral service provided by Melville & Daughters on Thursday 28th October 2010.
Prior to this, we were in Tenerife dealing with the death of Gifford so it was left to my niece Carlene Noel to find a funeral director in England. She therefore informed us about your business but at the time I was somewhat reluctant and had apprehensions about "This young professional black man who Gifford would have chosen and liked" as my head and mouth were saying "black culture equals lateness, no mercy attitude, no sensitivity, and such like comments. I made my points very clear to my family. This was due to my personal experiences of various funerals in the past.
I must say on the first visit to your office I had a good look around. I checked your whole manner of conversation i.e.: dress, attitude, etc., including your toilets (yes, they count too), I smiled when I saw you pick up a tiny piece of litter from your light coloured carpets! Thought I was the only OCD one left, and this cheered us on the way home thinking the more successful the business becomes equals more cleaning, ha-ha. Your offer of tea/coffee was nice but maybe a chilled sweet white wine from Germany may have got a yes please. The whole conversation my family had with you gave me confidence that you were the right person. Things were on the 'up' and I was the more so impressed when you sent my receipts via post within a day, as I didn't have to wait several weeks then hunt you down like a mad woman for something I was entitled to. Anyway, I did the same checks on the second visit and you seemed consistent in your approach. Thanks for the duty of care you showed when you explained to all of us about seeing Gifford.
Thursday 28th Oct 2010 started perfectly with you arriving in good time (oh how I loathe a late start) and the drivers were extremely polite and gracious. There was absolutely no panic when the roads on our journey were cordoned off by police as I informed my family in the car that you were more than able to deal with any arising issues and "bend or break" would arrive in respectable time, although any lateness was not due to you. Throughout the whole funeral you and your staff were brilliant, I can offer nothing but praise and gratitude for Melville & Daughters, and have already commented on this to many people, and will continue to do so in the future. I have even gone so far as letting my family know that should I be taken 'voluntary or by force' to the grave, although my body is to be donated to medical science first - if for any reason this cannot be done at the time, then its Melville & Daughters I request to 'sort me out proper'.
Thank you again, for the professionalism, the peace of mind, and going above and beyond what was expected of you. Thank you for taking such good care of our beloved GIFFORD who will be sadly missed but never forgotten. Damian, don't ever let your standard drop.