Special way to honour Dads no longer with us

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To help families honour their dads during Sydney’s lockdown, Pinegrove Memorial Park at Minchinbury is one of two western Sydney memorial parks coordinating the placement of a floral tribute and personalised card on behalf of those who can’t visit the sites this Father’s Day.

Forest Lawn and Pinegrove Memorial Parks will arrange 1,000 small bouquets of gerberas, at no cost, to be placed on the families’ behalf in the lead up to Father’s Day.

InvoCare’s Executive General Manager of Cemeteries and Crematoria Steve Nobbs said it was a way for Sydney families to honour their dad, while encouraging families to keep safe by staying home, or for the families in a different local government area.

“This is a small, yet meaningful, way we can help families honour their dad’s memory during this tough time, while being COVID safe,” Mr Nobbs said.

“We know many people right across the state are doing it tough right now. For families who have lost a loved one, we hope the personal gesture can provide some comfort and solace that their dad was honoured on Father’s Day, until they can physically visit in groups, safely, in person.”

The gerbera was selected due to their representation of brightness, happiness and rejuvenation, which will be uplifting for the families during this tough time.

Mr Nobbs, a father of two, lost his grandfather and father within two weeks of each other during the height of the current Sydney COVID lockdown, and knows firsthand how hard this milestone can be for families.

“The big milestones, like the first birthday, Christmas or Father’s Day after your grandfather or father has passed away, are always harder,” he said.

“Father’s Day is usually a busy day for our parks as many families like to come together and spend a meaningful moment at Forest Lawn or Pinegrove with their dad.

“This initiative is our small and personal way of showing the families we are here for them during these tough times.”

To have a flower placed, families will need to book the service by Thursday, September 2. This can be done by calling the reception at the memorial park and specifying the site, the names and message for the card. Loved ones will also be asked to provide a mobile phone number so the InvoCare team can send a photo of the tribute once it has been placed.

To book a flower for Father’s Day at Forest Lawn Memorial Park, call (02) 9606 5822, or for Pinegrove Memorial Park, call (02) 9625 8066.

Both memorial parks have also invited families to join a special online Father’s Day Memorial Service on Sunday, September 5. The Forest Lawn event will begin at 10am, followed by the Pinegrove service at 11am. The livestream can be accessed via each memorial park’s website.

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