A woman works on a laptop in a cafe


Written by Katie Sullivan, pressconnects


Inside Sutfin Funeral Chapel in Nichols, an essential oil diffuser fills the air with a subtle, fresh fragrance.


Along a side wall, several handmade quilts are draped over a rack, gifts from families served here.


And on a long table in the side meeting room, where a bay window lets the light in from this stretch of South Main Street in the small town of Nichols, funeral director Jody Cooley has set out a silver tray upon which she’s placed several small bottles of water, hand sanitizer, a box of tissues and two clear dishes: one filled with miniature Hershey bars and the other with silver foil wrapped York peppermint patties.


Because it helps, she says.


Cooley’s is a snapshot of the modern funeral home, where personal touches prevail over convention and where women have found a niche in a previously male-dominated field.


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