| Monday May 30th 2016

Drive-thru funeral parlor: “It’s a convenience thing”

Drive-thru funeral parlor

Here lies the late Robert Sanders, 58, at the Robert L. Adams drive-through funeral parlor in the Los Angeles area city of Compton. The funeral parlor has been in business since 1974, and is believed to be the only drive-through funeral home in southern California, according to office manager Denise Knowles-Bragg. She says the parlor offers a convenient alternative to older people who find it hard to walk, those who want to make a quick stop during the lunch hour, and the families of well-known deceased people who expect many visitors.

The Los Angeles Times profiled this establishment in an article last year.

“You can come by after work, you don’t need to deal with parking, you can sign the book outside and the family knows that you paid your respects,” said [owner Peggy Scott Adams]. “It’s a convenience thing.”

The venue provides a speedy way for well-known community folk to be viewed en masse. Seniors don’t have to leave their cars. Those who can’t stomach stepping inside a funeral home don’t have to. Families can avoid the complications of hosting a formal indoor viewing. And the disabled can roll through in their own wheelchairs — as one woman recently did.

In the 1980s, cemetery shootouts made gang members reluctant to gather for graveside services. The drive-thru’s glass partition is bulletproof, Scott Adams said, and so for a while the mortuary became a popular location for gang funerals.


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