Walmart Caskets and Other Spooky Funeral Service Trends


It’s Halloween! It’s time for trick-or-treaters, Halloween candy stomach aches, brains in a bag, drive-thru funerals… you know, the usual.

I’ve saved all the disturbing funeral service trends I’ve discovered online just for Halloween. Because really, what’s scarier than Walmart caskets and cheesy funeral home advertising?

While you’re in the Halloween spirit, enjoy these 5 scary funeral service trends!

1. Walmart caskets

When Walmart disrupted every other industry in the U.S., how could we expect them not to disrupt ours? Historically known to put small businesses out of business, Walmart has been offering affordable caskets for a few years now, ranging from $1,000-$1,700. While I think it’s completely impersonal and daunting, some price shoppers actually to go for them.

My favorite part about this? They offer free in-store pickup. There’s just something about picking up a casket from Walmart that doesn’t sit well with me.

Scary Funeral Trends


2. Willie the Wimp

Willie the Wimp was a Chicago guy with a bad reputation, and after he was shot, his dad threw him a funeral. But I like to think of as more of a “funeral party.” Look at the poor guy! He’s propped up holding a steering wheel to a Cadillac Seville-style casket. I’m not sure if this is funeral personalization at its best or its worst? Either way, it’s awfully creepy.

In the end, gang-banger Willie the Wimp didn’t have his claim to fame until after his death. His casket inspired someone to even write a song about it! Talk about celebrating the life lived.

Willie the Wimp was buried today, 
They laid him to rest in a special way. 
Sent him off in the finest style 
That casket-mobile really drove ’em wild 
Southside Chicago will think of him often 
Talkin’ ’bout Willie the Wimp and his Cadillac coffin, 
Willie the Wimp and his Cadillac coffin

That casket, it looked like a fine Seville 
He had a vanity license and a Cadillac grille 
Willie was propped up in the driver’s seat 
He had diamonds on his fingers and a smile sweet 
Fine red suit had the whole town talkin’ 
Talkin’ ’bout Willie the Wimp and his Cadillac coffin 
Willie the Wimp and his Cadillac coffin

Oh, Cadillac to Heaven he was wavin’ the banner 
He left like he lived, in a lively manner 
With a-hundred dollar bills in his fingers tight 
He had flowers for wheels and a-flashin’ headlights 
He been wishin’ for wings, no way he was walkin’ 
Talkin’ ’bout Willie the Wimp and his Cadillac coffin 
Yeah, Willie the Wimp and his Cadillac coffin


3. Drive-thru funeral parlor

I’m not going to say this is a completely awful idea… I mean hey, at least funeral homes are tuning into the fact that the families of today are in a hurry. But something about this doesn’t sit right with me. Drive-thrus are for greased up junk food, not remembering the life lived.

This idea is definitely a symbol of the fact that many people in this country can’t stop for one minute to even pay tribute to someone they cared about. Is it just me, or is this a trend we want to stay away from?

Scary Funeral Trends



4. Brain in a bag

This isn’t so much a trend, (and I sure hope it never becomes one). But, two years ago a family in Utah complained about a bag they received from their funeral director. They said it had a “foul smell” to it. Turns out, the funeral director placed the loved one’s brain into a bag and gave it to the family (without telling them it was a brain).

According to the funeral director, that’s a common practice. But isn’t it important to let the family know you’re giving them their loved one’s brain before you actually do? Just the thought of that is enough to give me chills!

5. Advertising that scares families away

Do I even need any explanation for this one? How in the world does one relate a happy, lovey-dovey holiday to preplanning their funeral? Not exactly an ideal way to connect with your target audience.

It get’s even weirder at the end when they say “By the way, did we tell you we were affordable?” Excuse me while I ditch my romantic dinner date to plan my significant other’s funeral! This isn’t exactly my idea of “the perfect gift” on Valentine’s Day!

Funeral Home Advertising



Which one of these trends scares you the most?  They’re all up there in our book!


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  1. Steve Robison

    Number 1 is the only one I care about. Our small town of 10k people just had a Walmart built about 3 years ago and although they don’t display caskets IN the store itself, they have them on the website of course. I’d say on average families come in with the knowledge of the Walmart prices only twice a year, but as people get more internet savvy that number will go up. It prompted us to take $1000 off of our casket prices and tack it onto our service charge so our caskets look more reasonable. It also saves the family a little on the tax amount they have to pay. We actually should have done this awhile ago. If someone mentions the Walmart prices though we tell them that we can’t guarantee what kind of condition it will be in when it arrives, IF it arrives on time and if they go pick it up from the store some people don’t have a vehicle to do that in. What we end up doing it matching the Walmart price plus $200 since they get to pick out which one they want and they don’t have to worry about delivery. Long story short, every funeral home is going to come across this situation at one point, you just have to find a way to please the family while still making a profit on the casket.

  2. Vaughn Balchunas

    Walmart carrying caskets is definitely a creepy thought. Just imagining picking up one from your local Walmart and carrying it all the way through the store and out to your waiting vehicle, because inevitably the site-to-store pickup is always at the back of the store. There is just something eerie with that thought.

    Also, number five is at the top of that spooky list. A great idea to pre-plan your funeral for your wife/husband/significant other, but not such a great idea giving it to him or her on Valentine’s Day. Hopefully this one will not become a regular in the Valentine’s Day gift-giving routine.

  3. aboveandbeyondfuneralservices

    I am not surprised that Walmart is selling caskets. They are a massive company that tries to enter every marketplace. Any space they believe they can make a dollar on they will give it a shot.

    Above and Beyond Funeral Services

  4. Stacey Beck

    My friend was looking for funeral products in Chicago like a casket, I had no idea you could just pick one up at your local Walmart. I want to say this surprises me, but it doesn’t! Interesting, thanks for sharing.

  5. Anthony

    OMW! these guys are taking thinking out of the box (read coffin) a bit too far methinks. I guess they are taking Steve Jobs’ advice of not doing things better than the competition, but doing things different to the competition to heart. Have you seen the Lindner coffin calendar? Now they are posing naked women with their coffins…believing that sex sells everything!

  6. Krystal

    Anthony, LOL thanks for sharing your comments. I haven’t seen Lindner coffin but you should post a link to it! And you have to admit, Steve Jobs’ advice is pretty good!


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