There is a right way
to do a funeral.

And you’ve known it all along. Death care isn’t what it used to be. Cremation rates are sky-high, customers have changing expectations, and new competitors materialize every day. An engaging and surprisingly enjoyable rebuttal to Jessica Mitford’s controversial 1963 book The American Way of Death, Layer’s The Right Way of Death is a must-read for any American funeral director, cemeterian, or mortuary owner who knows there’s something wrong with funeral service today, and is ready to do death better.

What people are saying
about The Right Way of Death

  • “Eric’s poignant perspective provides a tonic for our times and a guiding light forward.”

    Darin Drabing, CEO, Forest Lawn Memorial Parks & Mortuaries
  • The Right Way of Death is a textbook on creating value within the funeral and cemetery profession. A must-read for every funeral professional and those wanting to enter the profession.”

    Jay Dodds, President & COO, Park Lawn Corporation
  • The Right Way of Death explains the importance, challenges, and opportunities of this profession while showing a path to the future.”

    Mark Krause, President, Krause Funeral Homes, Wisconsin
  • The Right Way of Death hits the proverbial nail on the head, addressing the profession’s most critical issues today and the transformational thinking needed to confront them.”

    Tom Antram, President & CEO, French Funerals, New Mexico
  • “This should be required reading in every firm in America.”

    Randy Bunker, Chairman of the Board, Bunker Family Funeral Homes and Cemetery, Arizona
  • The Right Way of Death is truly a gift to all who choose this noble profession and treat it as a calling.”

    J. Mark Busch, Busch Funeral and Crematory Services, Ohio
  • The Right Way of Death is exactly the wake-up call our industry needs.”

    Tony Lloyd, President & COO, Buchanan Group, Inc., Indiana
  • The Right Way of Death clarifies who we are but also who we can be for the families we serve.”

    Robert A. Gordon Jr., President and CEO, Cypress Lawn Cemetery, California
  • “Using Layer’s approach, we will disrupt our own businesses for the good of our customers, our companies, and our employees.”

    Brad Speaks, President & CEO, Speaks Chapels, Missouri
  • “Layer has given us exactly what we needed—a pat on the back and a kick in the tail.”

    Gary Freytag, President & CEO, Spring Grove Cemetery and Arboretum, Ohio
  • The Right Way of Death is a thought-provoking dive that should stop any funeral home owner, manager or front line staff member in their tracks.”

    Scott Newton, President, Graystone Associates, Inc.


The Split Personality of the Calling

There is hope.

The current uncertainty around death care is not morticians’ fault, but it is their problem. The calling is hamstrung by mixed messages. It’s tough for a modern funeral director to decide whether to be leader or follower, salesperson or confidant. But there is a right way to do death, and funeral professionals are experts. The future of the business will require a recognition of that truth so that those who work in death care can reclaim the soul of the calling and guide families with care and confidence.