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Families remember loved ones through Dryer Funeral Home holiday tradition

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Written by Amy Mayhew   
Wednesday, November 28 2012

More and more families are tak...

HOLLY, Michigan – Doug Crane sat quietly at Dryer Funeral Home’s holiday craft table, reflecting on his mother’s memory, and making a memorial Christmas ornament to hang on the funeral home’s Memorial Remembrance Tree.

“She loved the outdoors,” Crane said of his mother, Ann, as he adorned the ornament with festive outdoorsy decorations and red ribbon. Ann was the well-known and much-loved Park Naturalist at Sorensen Nature Center, and passed away unexpectedly last December.

“Mom was with us at this time last year,” he said writing her name on the ornament. “We’d just had our first snow storm of the season, and celebrated my sister’s birthday with a meal my Mom prepared – her famous chicken and dumplings.”


Crane’s efforts are part of a holiday tradition at Dryer Funeral Home in which family members can come into the funeral home from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. and use the provided craft materials to make a memorial Christmas ornament for their loved one.


Bruce Dryer said he was introduced to the concept of having a Memorial Remembrance Tree during a trip to Florida in 1991.

“We saw it at a funeral home there, and thought it was a great idea,” Dryer said. “Every year, more and more people take part in it – it’s really become a wonderful holiday tradition, and a meaningful way to honor a loved one’s memory.”

At 7 p.m. Monday, Dec. 3, the funeral home will host a Community Memorial Service, open to the public. Pastors Cliff Schroeder and Ed Pedley will officiate, while members of the Holly High School Choir are expected to sing.

“Holidays can be tough,” Gordie Dryer said. “That’s why the memorial service and making the ornaments for the tree are so nice – they give everyone time to reflect on those they love and miss every day, especially during the holidays.”


Dryer Funeral Home is located at 101 First St., Holly. For more information on the Community Memorial Service, contact the funeral home at (248) 634-8291.


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