I am just home "A night with an embalmer" run by APPI - Australian Paranormal Phenomenon Investigators as part of their Death Culture series.
Fascinating evening of stories from an interesting lady. Jan Field MAIE MBIE (qualified as an Embalmer with extensive experience as a funeral director) shared stories and challenges associated with disaster clean up and identification of the lives lost.
The talk focused on Jan's role in the recovery, identification and repatriation on people who have died in natural disasters, plane crashes and wartime. Jan detailed her experiences in working in a war torn Bosnia, the aftermath of the Bali bombings, post Tsunami and various plane crashes from recent history across the Asia and African continents.
I was moved by the respect and dignity given to the lost souls and that all people, regardless of statues/wealth/religion/nationality are given the utmost respect by the team that goes in to make sense of the devastation.
It really was a peak behind closed doors as rarely do you consider the man hours and logistics that follows disasters when it comes to identifying victims and sending them home from such international events such as the Bali Bombings or the Tsunamis.
I attended the evening with my sister Gen and her boyfriend Chris (welcome to the family) and here is what they have to add...
GEN SAID: I was unsure what I was going to get with the night with an embalmer. What I got was surprisingly exactly what I felt I wanted to know. I found the information especially about the Bosnian Genocide to be quite interesting and thought provoking. I had not thought previously of what team would take on that role and she showed the utmost respect for the victims in the discussions. Jan was engaging and allowed for me to undergo her professional journey of disaster work with her and was able to gain insights. I have left with answers I did not know I wanted or needed and find myself interested to find out more.
CHRIS SAID: Jan delivered her presentation well. She provided an interesting insight to her role as an embalmer during natural disaster events. Her perspective was thought provoking, yet respectful.
This is the second talk in the Death Culture Series and I certainly hope there will be more as it is in the business of death and dying that you find incredible tales of life and examples of how we are connected as humans.
Well done APPI for an interesting night. I wonder what the next door we will peak behind will be...
APPI WEBSITE: http://www.appighosthunts.com
Alex Cayas is the director of the mayhem at Ghosts of Oz, Captain of the Paracon Australia ship and, has aspirations to be a banjo playing hippy who lives in a caravan by the sea.