Funeral home fire

Smoke rises from the southeast corner of Heafey Hoffmann Dworak & Cutler funeral chapel as Omaha firefighters continue to douse the blaze on Jan. 26 , 2016.

It will be at least a few more weeks until anyone’s allowed back inside the funeral home at 78th and West Center Road that caught fire Tuesday morning.

Bill Cutler, co-owner of Heafey Hoffmann Dworak & Cutler, said he had thought cremains inside the building could be retrieved on Friday, but the Omaha Fire Department hasn’t opened the building yet. The cremains were undamaged by the fire, as they were behind steel doors on the building’s west side, which sustained the least damage.

In the meantime, Heafey Hoffmann still is servicing the community through its other three locations.

Cutler said it’s hectic now, but he and his staff have rearranged services and appointments. He said a big help during this entire process has been the clients.

He said that as Heafey Hoffmann employees scrambled to reach out to people, the level of support and patience they received was unbelievable.

“I can’t tell you how wonderful the families have been to work with,” he said.

The building, valued at $1.55 million, and its contents, valued at $777,000, were considered a total loss. However, Cutler said the company plans to rebuild due to its central location and history.

Contact the writer: 402-444-1304, news@owh.com

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