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Service to farewell those lost in lockdown

As the global pandemic restricted crowds earlier this year, people who lost loved ones were forced to make difficult decisions about who could attend funerals, and although live-streaming took off, many missed out on saying good bye.

Next week, William Barrett and Sons’ annual Christmas Memorial Service will take on extra meaning for those who were locked out of a traditional funeral.

The event is into its 14th year and will be heading outdoors for the first time, to ensure as many people as possible can attend.

Diane Hill was allowed to invite just 10 people to the funeral of Jean Winwood, her mother, when she died in May.

“Mum passed away in mid May, we have a brother doing fly-in, fly-out and she had a grand daughter in Darwin and other family that were not able to come,” Ms Hill said.

“It made it really difficult for those who were not able to be there to say goodbye.

“For people who are in the Eastern States or overseas it must be really difficult to come to understand they are actually gone because you are not there to say goodbye.”

The Rev. Greg Ross, of St Augustine Uniting Church, will be taking the service and he said the event was extremely important this year.

“Particularly this year there have been so many people that haven’t been able to get to a service,” he said.

“Even though we were live-streaming it is never quite the same as having people in the same room to experience saying goodbye together.”

The service will feature images of family members of attendees who died during the year and each attendee can light a candle which will form the shape of two hearts.

Those planning to attend can submit photos of their loved ones to info@barrettfunerals.com.au to be included in the service.

The service will be held at Mangrove Cove next Wednesday night.

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