I work as a mortuary driver I am the person that initially picks up peoples deceased loved ones. I also deal with coroners offices, donor delivery, and multiple funeral homes.


Edit- to add a little more depth to what in terms I do.

Comments: 137 • Responses: 59  • Date: 

Lemmywinks197827 karma

Alright. Let's just get this out of the way. Any, ah, necrophilia stories?

tacticalpacifier22 karma

no thankfully not.

nrith16 karma

There's still time.

tacticalpacifier33 karma

But not for the dead

Early80sAholeGuy21 karma

Is it a dead-end job?

tacticalpacifier21 karma

lol nice pun, but to answer the question yes and no there are companies that you can go to that you can grow but my current place of employment no.

TheLittlestTiefling15 karma

What was the most difficult pickup you've had to make? What was the best?

tacticalpacifier60 karma

The worst individual case I’ve had to pick up was a full term still born for the coroners office. They didn’t want my gurney in that area so I was forced to carry the baby out like you would carry a live one to prevent other patients from knowing.

TheLittlestTiefling23 karma

Jeez that's pretty harsh. Thanks for sharing

tacticalpacifier31 karma

Your welcome that’s the most emotionally. The other hardest is any time having to transport a decomposing body especially when it’s a 5-6 hour drive in the heat because if you use your A/C the smell will be stuck in it.

Rivet2210 karma

Buy an Ozone Generator to get rid of smells in cars. Works like a champ.

tacticalpacifier2 karma

I’ll have to look into it

Nakotadinzeo2 karma

I would have thought a duffle bag... Since it's possible someone might notice the baby isn't breathing.

tacticalpacifier16 karma

The old days yes but with the progress of medicine the need to pick up babies has lessened so it’s not a typical pick up and if your picking up from the morgue most times they put them in brown bags that u get from grocery stores

tacticalpacifier20 karma

The most difficult is picking up children no matter the age it’s sad. The best is always the elderly due to they lived a long life. It’s always sad seeing a loved one go.

FunkiPorcini2 karma

That is the main reason I didn't pursue forensics or mortuary work.....I know my heart wouldn't be able to take the children.

Hat's off to you for your strength!

What is the most badass way you've seen someone go out?

tacticalpacifier2 karma

I didn’t see them but a friend had to pick up a guy who got out of jail or prison not sure ate and drank himself to death within two weeks and died with his hand in a can of soup or something on the floor.

FunkiPorcini1 karma


I can't help but picture that scene from Monty Python. Hoping the body your friend handled was still intact.

tacticalpacifier2 karma

The body was whole but was quite ripe and bloated

TheGarp10 karma

Do you drive in the multiple occupant lanes when you have a body in the car?

tacticalpacifier1 karma

Sometimes but my boss tried it and got pulled over they gave him the choice of a seat belt ticket or driving in the multi occupant lane.

psych_is_a_science9 karma

Is it a depressing job? How are your coworkers? My grandma used to work back in the day, in Romania, as an early forensics biologist (back when they could only do blood types and other basic stuff-no DNA or anything fancy and all forensic people were biologists because there wasn't such a thing as a forensic science major). She sometimes had to work with coroners (though she usually handled paternity and rape cases, sometimes she had to do blood work for the coroner's cases) and she said that they were always drinking. How true is that? How do your coworkers deal with working with the dead?

tacticalpacifier12 karma

No it’s sad at times but I wouldn’t say depressing most of the people we pick up are elderly that have live long lives. I deliver and deal with donor companies as well as funeral homes and coroners. The coroners in the larger cities I can see why it could be depressing.

zephaniah_marie9 karma

What brought you to this field of work? Was it your first choice dream?

tacticalpacifier17 karma

no I was originially a hospital corpsman in the navy got out and worked a few odd jobs ended up working at a cemetery. A friend got hired and asked if i would be interested in working with them. Hours are odd due to being on call 24/7 almost but the pay isnt bad this is a job for me not a career currently going to school.

nrith10 karma

a hospital corpsman

Well, you kind of still are.

tacticalpacifier12 karma

Yes I went from trying to save people to burying them to now being their last ride.

UrbanDurga9 karma

What are your thoughts or impressions when you pick people up from hospital morgues? I work in Critical Care, and send a fair number of patients downstairs. They are often still attached to lines and drains, and may look quite disturbing after having gone through robust efforts at resuscitation upstairs. I always wonder who will see this person after I’ve tucked them away into their zipper bag, and what they will perceive when they open it back up.

tacticalpacifier11 karma

Honestly you don’t have to look at the face unless you want to most the time I only open up the body bag as much as I need basically to identify the body and move on.

UrbanDurga4 karma

Ah, okay. I didn’t realize that! Whose job is it to return them to a semblance of their former appearance?

tacticalpacifier15 karma

That would be the funeral home embalmer and staff. Although it is a bit disturbing when u do have to look more than you want seeing the suture lines ona child post autopsy was the worst besides not being warned the coroner didn’t close a gentleman’s chest up after an autopsy and opened the bag to be staring into his chest cavity.

UrbanDurga7 karma

Oh, no. Yeah, that would be a shock! Thank you for the replies! I wonder about people in your profession quite often. It’s been a pleasure learning about your work 😊

tacticalpacifier5 karma

Thank you it’s been interesting seeing behind the scenes

_peppermint3 karma

Do you know why the coroner wouldn’t close the chest cavity up?

tacticalpacifier1 karma

The body most likely was going to be cremated and the coroner knew the funeral home embalmer and spoke with them.

dodecahedodo4 karma

What kind of music do you guys listen to while driving?

tacticalpacifier12 karma

Well due to working at a cemetery before this and on long drives I listen to audio books I’ve listened to the whole dark tower series and am currently on the 4th book of the Horus heresy series.

WCXPE4 karma

Ever heard something weird from the bodies?

tacticalpacifier3 karma

No they do groan and gurgle sometimes do to air still in their lungs.

Bannedbyspe23 karma

I’d kill for a position with good job security, what’s the best way to break into your field?

tacticalpacifier2 karma

Go talk to the funeral homes so they know your face and see you. People can easily ruin a funeral homes image by being unprofessional so they are very picky about employees. Also the coroners office need transporters too.

Bannedbyspe21 karma

People can easily ruin a funeral homes image by being unprofessional so they are very picky about employees.

I can definitely see this

tacticalpacifier1 karma

My company’s has gone through about 7 employees since I started

dodecahedodo3 karma

Have you ever watched The Casketeers?

tacticalpacifier2 karma

No what is that?

dodecahedodo5 karma

Reality TV series set in a funeral home, owned by a Maori family, in New Zealand. It snaps between comedy and serious conversations about death, acknowledging the unique differences in cultural beliefs for indigenous communities, and jokes about pies. (Is on YouTube)

tacticalpacifier4 karma

It’s true you do see a lot of different cultures and how they deal with death. The wierdest thing is that the poor and the rich tend to go to the same funeral homes.

dodecahedodo1 karma

Are there many funeral homes in one area? Are you attached to one or do you take bodies to different ones?

tacticalpacifier4 karma

I’m with a third party I have keys to about 8 different funeral homes in my area

imagine_amusing_name1 karma

I'm going to assume for after hours seances n ghost orgies?

tacticalpacifier3 karma

No delivery the worst part of the job is having to go into funeral homes alone in the middle of the night to drop a body off it gets creepy sometimes.

SmokinStrawberries3 karma

Can I ride with you?

tacticalpacifier9 karma

I don’t know you but my fiancé does ride with me on the long calls.

SmokinStrawberries3 karma

Couples need that 3rd wheel every now and then..But I guess that's who you guys are picking up so there isn't room for me!

tacticalpacifier4 karma

Well the vehicles we use is normally a van with all the seats except the driver and passenger seats taken out

SmokinStrawberries3 karma

Did you ever pickup the wrong body?

tacticalpacifier13 karma

Yes my first call by myself I went and picked up the right body but the body was supposed to go somewhere else it was my dispatches fault

overusedoxymoron2 karma

Fellow transport technician and crematory operator here! I often have to put aside my sympathies for the family and be a professional, no matter how difficult it may be. Was there ever a time when you were at a call and nearly broke down in front of the family?

tacticalpacifier2 karma

No Not emotionally, but did have a hospice nurse make me mad enough almost to yell at her and then one 40 y/o lady reverted to acting like a toddler throwing a fit and screaming about her mommy when she passed away

overusedoxymoron1 karma

Oh yes I've dealt with my fair share of entitled adult children. One time a widow followed us all the way fr hospice to the Care center. We nearly had to call security because she was trying to get inside.

tacticalpacifier1 karma

Yeah if I notice I’m being followed I’ll lose them if I have to because I usually do the after hours calls.

SmokinStrawberries2 karma

Are people afraid of touching you once they found out your occupation?

tacticalpacifier10 karma

No I only pick them up and deliver them to their destination.

Imalittledcup2 karma

oh so one of my good friends wants to buy the car that carries the coffins and put a bed in it. just how roomy is it?

tacticalpacifier5 karma

I drive a van lol but the hursts are quit roomy in the back.

JustCallMeDan6662 karma

Does your job changed the way you see people?

Have you ever witnessed someone other being disrespectful to a deceased one?

tacticalpacifier2 karma

Yes there’s a reason I wanted to keep my anonymity because I’ve seen funeral homes try and ask lower end workers to take pace makers out or them drop a body a foot onto the next table cause their lazy. Btw you need an embalming license to take those out. Also the same place doesn’t clean their tables and there is dried blood from god knows when and even mouse or rat fecal matter. Now this is only one place none of the others are like this but this is also the cheapest.

frogsickle2 karma

What is your salary? Roundabout? (Just got laid off)

tacticalpacifier1 karma

About 21000 give or take depending on the amount you pick up.

ObjectivismForMe1 karma

Why does it cost so much to transport a body. Friend paid $1500 for a 2 mile ride. Should of got an Uber.

tacticalpacifier1 karma

Because it’s a business unfortunately I worked as a grave digger for a year before this and I will say the whole system is expensive many people don’t know but in many areas graveyards are broken down by district and if your not with in it you have to pay a higher price for the plot. I don’t agree with it but the transport cost also has to do with being on call imagine being told to have your deceased loved one wait until the following business day to be taken

Ghostspider19892 karma

How does one get into this line of work?

tacticalpacifier1 karma

Apply be well groomed and reliable being able to empathize with people greatly helps to. You can start out as a driver at the bigger companies and move to more roles as you learn.

InfectedArmpit2 karma

How much does someone in your profession earn per year?

tacticalpacifier1 karma

I make probably around 600 to 1200 every two weeks so not terribly great but for the amount of work I do for it isn’t bad beings I probably never work near a 40hr work week. I get to relax hang out with family until I get called

phil79412 karma

Do you ever get depressed about having such a job and want to quit? Did you ever have to pick up a family member or close friend? Do you ever let yourself think of the day when you will be picked up?

tacticalpacifier2 karma

I do want to quit and get a bit depressed not cause the job itself but because the hours I’m on call 24 hours a day 6 days a week meaning I have to sacrifice doing things with my family sometimes. I’ve picked up two family friends grandparents it was a bit awkward but made them feel better knowing that they would be taken care of. No I just want to be dumped into the ocean.

SmokinStrawberries2 karma

What pickup have you anticipated in your head for the future to be the peak of your career? Ex. Celebrity, twins, worlds most wanted serial killer...

tacticalpacifier13 karma

Honestly I don’t anticipate any I’m horrible about keeping up with celebrities and news and stuff. Although I have delivered to the funeral home micheal Jackson went to and their facilities are amazing the fridge they use for bodies smells like mint

_peppermint2 karma

What does it normally smell like? I’m very curious about all of this lol

tacticalpacifier2 karma

You ever smell the moldy freezer at the gas station? Basically like tht so long as there isn’t a decomposing corpse in there.

_peppermint2 karma

Yeah, you must have a strong stomach to be able to transport a decomposing body especially if it’s a longer distance on a hot day

tacticalpacifier1 karma

Yeah it smells like rotting animal but worse

nrith1 karma

Have you ever picked up someone who wasn't dead yet?

tacticalpacifier7 karma

No I have not I would freak out if one moaned while I was driving or moved

i_like__bananas1 karma

Would you recommend an old mortuary car for camping since it has enough space to sleep?

tacticalpacifier1 karma

If it’s the one for caskets sure they use those only for funerals. If used for the bodies it would depend on the company I’ve seen some really gross transport vehicles.

imagine_amusing_name1 karma

What's the most inappropriate comment or joke you heard whilst collecting a silent passenger?

tacticalpacifier1 karma

Not so much a comment but watched a family pull off a hanes T-shirt off the deceased and kept it cause it was a good shirt and they were poor but they had money for a 30 pack of beer daily.

jetsdude1 karma

u ever not fully stop at stop signs?

tacticalpacifier1 karma

Yes due to I have to go to some very rural areas some times where you can see a mile each way.

Guy_In_Florida1 karma

Do you have a speaker on your van that blares "Bring Out Yer Dead"?

tacticalpacifier1 karma

No and unfortunately can’t very few people have a sense of humor when their loved one dies.

geraldineparsonsmith1 karma

Well, you've never met my family. We always try to put the "fun" back in funeral.

tacticalpacifier1 karma

Better then putting the cream in cremation

CaptainJimDagger1 karma

How does one go about getting into this profession?

tacticalpacifier2 karma

I think they have want adds on indeed

syfyguy641 karma

Have you ever been called, but the person didn't actually die?

tacticalpacifier1 karma


Crepes_for_days30001 karma

Have you had any creepy, paranormal-ish happen to you? Or something you still struggle to find a rational explanation for?

tacticalpacifier1 karma

Yes I have had creepy things happen such as foot steps when no one is around.

Crepes_for_days30001 karma

Can you give me more detail on one or two of your creepiest experiences??? Please!!

tacticalpacifier1 karma

One was around 10pm on a Saturday the building is an old Victorian style building with two floors and a basement the basement is where the embalming room is and the fridge where I have to place the bodies. Now when down stairs in the basement of some one walks up or down the stairs it makes your typical creaks on each step as you go I’ve had this happen a few times to me as if some one were going up or down when I no for a fact I’m alone not to mention there is cctv showing nothing there. Now not saying it’s a ghost it could be something but I don’t have an explanation.

tacticalpacifier1 karma

I also have a story from an embalmer he won’t work with door open cause a lady will walk from one end of the room to the other in front of the door to the embalming room. Same funeral home btw I’ve also heard tools rattling around in the embalming room and though that he was working on some one to have the secretary say she is the only one there.

SmokinStrawberries1 karma

How do you charge for this? Does a small child cost the same as a morbidly obese person? What are the add on costs?

tacticalpacifier6 karma

Costs are closer to how Uber or a taxi charge it goes by mileage normally but I don’t have to deal with that part. On long calls I get paid hourly where local I get paid by mileage.

SmokinStrawberries2 karma

You are telling me there is no bonus for a 500 pounds person? What happens if you reject that call?

Bot_Metric3 karma

You are telling me there is no bonus for a 226.8 kilograms person? What happens if you reject that call?

I'm a bot | Feedback | Stats | Opt-out | v5.1

tacticalpacifier3 karma

Nope I’ve picked up many a obese person

awholelottanothin1 karma

Has this job made you more comfortable/accepting of death & your own mortality, or more fearful?

tacticalpacifier1 karma

Neither I was prior corpsman attached to infantry marines from deployment I’ve realized when it’s your time it’s your time there’s nothing you can do.

Nitrosec4540 karma

I worked around mortuary drivers before, do you or anyone else ever smile? The guys i used to see never had any emotions, rather none i could see.

tacticalpacifier1 karma

Yes I do smile lol just not in front of clients

[deleted]-8 karma


tacticalpacifier1 karma

No go to the local coroners most large cities it’s a body of fully naked people on tables

almightySR-9 karma

Why do you want questions asked?

tacticalpacifier24 karma

because its an odd job and seeing the behind the scenes can be interesting to some people.