UPDATE OAKLEY-HAMMOND FUNERAL HOME, MOORE & KIRK IRVINGTON CHAPEL Address: 5342 E. Washington St. Phone: 357-1159 E-mail: oakleyhammondfh@aol.com,

mooreandkirk@aol.comWeb sites: www.oakleyhammond.com,

www.mooreandkirk.comFounded: 1905 Founders: William and Tressie Moore Kirk Owners: Bruce Oakley and Joseph Hammond Service: funeral services Employees: two full-time and two part-time Revenue (past 12 months): $300,000 Date of fi rst profi le: July 24, 2006

Change is a constant factor in business. Those working in the funerary industry are reminded of this more often than most, but Bruce Oakley and Joseph Hammond are dealing with a different sort of change as of November: their business’s renaming and remodeling.

The change in name from Moore & Kirk Funeral Home was done to reflect current ownership. Oakley and Hammond have owned the mortuary since the death of William Oakley, Bruce’s father, in 2002, and they felt it was time to update the name. But they decided to keep “Moore & Kirk” as part of the new name to maintain recognition and keep both company and family history in mind.

“We would’ve named it Moore, Kirk, Oakley and Hammond, but it sounded too much like a law firm,” Oakley joked.

The changes to the building are thanks to a 2008 grant from the Irvington Development Organization to renovate businesses in the east-side neighborhood. The grant enabled Oakley-Hammond to spruce up its exterior, including new paint, columns and signs. Inside, the company is increasingly incorporating the Internet into its services, including refining its Web site to allow mourners to write condolences online.

Though they are not sure the poor economy is to blame, cremation has grown in popularity compared to costlier ground burial, so the industry may not be as “recession-proof” as it’s cracked up to be.

Oakley-Hammond also has seen a decline in the value of customers’ pre-need service funds, in which clients deposit money for a future service. The funds are designed to grow at the pace of inflation, but lately have been losing money. Indiana law requires that funeral homes offer services guaranteed by the funds, regardless of the funds’ size, which can make some funerals money-losing propositions. But that didn’t stop the number of funds handled by Oakley-Hammond from doubling in 2008.

As part of its effort to maintain strong contacts within the close-knit Irvington community, Oakley-Hammond makes every effort to buy its supplies locally. The company is resisting the trend toward purchasing foreign-made caskets.

“We know where we come from,” Oakley said.


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