Recently I read a piece from NPR that, in a nutshell, suggested we always attend a funeral if at all possible. Not every funeral, of course, but the ones for those we knew in life, or (perhaps especially) the funerals for loved ones of someone we know. Our attendance can mean so much during those occasions. The piece is almost twelve years old but, as with most things these days, nothing truly dies on the Internet. It was resurrected recently on social media, and I read it with interest.
Over the years I have attended funerals and visitations that ran the gamut from sparse to overwhelming attendance. Some funereal proceedings were an odd mix of fire & brimstone religiosity that decided to use the occasion to touch upon seemingly every hot button topic except for the deceased, to ones that were intimately personal ceremonies that provided those present with comfort. memories and closure. I've even been to one where a group of my cousin's peers performed a beautiful rendition of a Boyz II Men song.