By Sammy Bredar
Loved ones of Jill Canady gathered June 24 at the Zionsville Flanner Buchanan funeral home to celebrate her life. At the service, Canady’s grandson, Benjamin Brockman, 7, took it upon himself to greet each visitor at the door – even though he wasn’t asked to.
He was 6 years old at the time.
“Benjamin was very close to his Grammy Jill who passed away from ovarian cancer,” said Kaitlin Brockman, a Zionsville resident and Benjamin’s mother. “He saw that I had a lot of people to greet at the funeral home and he took it upon himself as the oldest grandson to bring a smile to everyone’s face and shake hands and welcome guests at the door. He wanted to make them feel welcome and loved just like his Grammy Jill would have.”
Flanner Buchanan owner Bruce Buchanan was impressed by the gesture. So, he rewarded Benjamin Brockman with an honorary employee certificate and a $25 Visa gift card.
Benjamin Brockman made sure every guest received a greeting.
“And if he missed someone who came in the door, I was told that he would go find them in the service room and welcome them and remind them to sign the guestbook in the hallway,” Buchanan said.
Buchanan said Benjamin Brockman’s greetings established a tone for the service.
“I can’t imagine a better tribute to a family member than having another family member at the door, greeting everyone kind of in an official capacity,” Buchanan said. “And usually they’re in the service room and they’re in a line and they need to do that, but, boy, the way that a family member could set the tone was something. And, you know, he didn’t overreact or kind of underreact. But you could tell he was, you know, very impressed. His initials are the same as mine, so everyone’s calling him ‘Little BB’ and having fun with that.”
Kaitlin Brockman noticed how excited her son was to have the staff at the funeral home recognize his efforts that day.
“Benjamin was so surprised and excited to be recognized,” she said. “The funeral home and all of the staff there went over and beyond to make our family feel special and Benjamin was smiling from ear to ear after their kindness.”