Hearse service offers chance to take machinery passion to the grave
You can’t take it with you, but you can make your beloved tractor – or other vehicle – part of your final journey, thanks to 22-year-old Aaron Grew from Scotstown, on the Monaghan and Fermanagh border.
The former engineering student at IT Sligo came up with ‘My Hearse; My Way’ – a method of ensuring that machinery enthusiasts could bring their passion to the grave.
Aaron, who works with McAree Engineering in Co. Monaghan, had the idea two years ago for attaching a hearse trailer to a tractor or other vehicle, for funeral services.
Close to his heart
However, it was only when his grand-uncle, Hubert Rooney, passed away in January, that he got the chance to put it into practice.
“He was a farmer and dealt in machinery and tractors. He bought his 11th Massey Ferguson a year ago – it was the first tractor he ever purchased, 25 years ago,” he said.
Aaron’s revamped old Ford Granada, which he transformed into a hearse trailer, was attached to his grand-uncle’s first ‘Massey’ for his funeral.
The service, ‘My Hearse; My Way,’ is now being offered to people throughout the country. “Like all projects, it took longer than it should have had,” said tractor-mad Aaron.
I had seen a hearse incorporated into a trike for motorbikes but I hadn’t seen anything like that for tractors, lorries or diggers. I thought families would like to have a favourite vehicle being part of the funeral to make it a bit more personal.
“I’ve got a lot of positive feedback and I only set up a Facebook page two weeks ago. At this stage I’m just trying to get the word out there.”
“I will work in conjunction with undertakers – I’m not trying to do away with undertakers. I just felt the transportation side of things could be more personal and that the hearse could go behind a familiar vehicle,” he said.
“I’m not in this to make any mad fortune – if I can put a bit of a smile back on the faces of the bereaved families, it will be worth it.
“Maybe it could even be a catchphrase that the deceased would have used regularly,” the engineer added.
“It’s just another wee touch that makes the hearse slightly more personal and every funeral unique,” said Aaron.