It’s been said that the only things certain in life are death and taxes, and Tara McCarron, a licensed funeral director, recently paid it forward by showing Johnston High School students how rewarding her career choice actually is.
McCarron, now 25, graduated from JHS in 2009 and still lives in town. One of more than 60 members of the business community who recently attended the school’s career fair last Wednesday, she exemplifies that a career in her field isn’t morbid but one that may offer a lifetime of opportunities.
“I actually, in my sophomore year, went to a career fair at the 1025 Club, and I met a female funeral director there. Something that she said to me, and I really couldn’t tell you what, it just stuck with me,” said McCarron. “I decided to be a funeral director the day I attended the Johnston Senior High School Career Fair when I was 15 years old, and I’ve never wavered from the belief that I could do this for the rest of my life.”
After graduating, McCarron went to Fine Mortuary College in Norwood, Massachusetts, and completed an internship in Rhode Island. She then took a national board exam and a state exam to become accredited.
“I love it, this is definitely my calling,” she said. “It’s almost like walking on a tightrope, because you have to be empathetic with the families but you also can’t allow yourself to internalize the loss.”
Currently employed by Carriage Corporations, which includes Buckler-Johnston Funeral Home, S.R. Avery, Sansone and A.A. Mariani & Son Funeral Home, McCarron was previously employed by Nardolillo Funeral Home, Inc.
At her booth at the fair, McCarron said that there were two students that really seemed interested in exploring her field. Other students, she felt, really didn’t know what to make of her presentation. She also added that she would absolutely participate in a similar event again because of the impact a fair had on her life.
“It certainly isn’t for everyone, but I’d really love to help people get over the misconception that it’s a very, very scary or depressing thing to do,” she said. “For anyone considering a career in the funeral service industry, I would like to say that it is one of the most rewarding jobs you can have, helping families in their time of need and bringing them peace of mind during the worst time of their lives is a feeling unmatched by anything else.”
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