You Be The Jury: Can you ban phony friends from a public memorial service?on January 4, 2013 @ 12:46 pm (Updated: 3:25 pm - 1/4/13 )
the Dori Monson Show a D-Mail asking for advice about whether to honor the dying wishes of her husband's best friend.
Listener Staci's husband's best friend, Steve, was dying from cancer when he asked her husband to prevent two phony friends from coming to his public memorial service. Now she and her husband are wondering if they should follow through.
Staci's husband wants to honor his friend's dying request but feels awkward about it. Making matters even more complicated, Staci's husband has "a bit of a business relationship" with the two people he's been asked to turn away.
News anchor Kim Shepard agrees with Staci that memorials are for the living, and that the two friends should be allowed to attend if they want to pay respects to Steve.
"Who is it going to affect going forward? I think Steve put his friend in a tough position," said Kim. "If it's supposed to be a public memorial, how can you keep anyone out?"
Even producer Jake had trouble with the decision. He thinks that a man's dying wishes are as serious as a will, and that Steve must have had a good reason to exclude these two friends.
"Shouldn't his family have made this a private memorial service," said Dori. "By invitation only?"
Listeners that called in were split evenly as to whether Staci and her husband should fulfill Steve's wishes.
Listener Ann says that Staci and her husband should honor Steve's wishes. She knows that there are people she wouldn't want at her funeral that might want to show up, even though they are not on speaking terms.
"If these guys didn't treat him decently, for whatever reason, maybe he didn't want to disclose what they did," said Ann.
Several listeners commented that Staci's husband should be diplomatic and honest, saying that it was Steve's last wishes to ask them not to attend. If the friends blame Staci and her husband, instead of Steve, it proves that Steve had a reason to ban them.
One listener, Andrew, said that Staci and her husband should blame the cancer drugs when they talk with Steve's "friends."
"He's dead, throw Steve under the bus," said Andrew.
Ultimately, there's no way to please everyone in this situation, so Staci wants you to decide: Should she follow Steve's wishes and ban their two mutual friends from Steve's public memorial?
Read Staci's letter:
I have a question for you and your listeners. My husband's best friend died a few days ago from cancer. Steve was just 42 years old, and his death was not unexpected, he had cancer.
Steve was talking with my husband about his funeral plans. And he made one request of my husband. Steve had two friends that he considered to be phony friend. He didn't have a specific gripe with these guys - he just felt they were phonies for reason I don't quite understand.
There is a public memorial this weekend for Steve - and that's where this gets sticky. Steve asked my husband to keep these two guys away from his memorial service. My husband knows these guys and feels really awkward about turning them away. He also has a bit of a business relationship with them and he's afraid turning them away could hurt that. I think Steve made an unreasonable request of my husband and has put him in a horrible position. My husband wants to honor his friends dying request , but he feels horribly awkward about having to do so. I thought I would see what you and your listeners think about this.
What you're saying on Facebook:
Matt Faure: If you don't honor me in death you didn't honor me in life.
SoTweetie Hillary: I think, in death and enlightenment, Steve realized how petty and ultimately unimportant his request was and is looking down hoping that Stacy's husband ignores it.
Pamela Burgdorf: Maybe the best friend is the real 'Mark' on Steve's list and setting up the best friend to have a contemptuous relationship/business future with the two gentlemen he needs to inform cannot come to the funeral. This can potentially make a living hell for the "so called-best friend'. I say don't tell the other two guys because -- Steve should have made provisions in his funeral plans for security staff.
Min Maurice Kelley: Stacy husband can hire somebody to tell them to stay away.
Vicki N Jeff Wolden: Funerals being decided by the living even when the one dying has specific requests? So the living's desire to have a certain coffin should override the one picked by the dying person? My mother picked out and paid for her entire funeral years before she died and although some people didn't like some aspects it stayed with what my mother wanted. My husband's brother has caused our family so much pain for the last 20 years that he does not want him at his funeral where his grieving wife and children will have to deal with him during one of the most difficult times in our lives.
Mark Chooljian: If they were phony, they probably won't show anyway. If they do, they were probably genuine and their being phony was all in his head. Just a guess.
Gretchen Witschel: If the guy who died kept on being friends with the "phonys" during his life then doesn't that make him a phony too?
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