A Compassion For Pets

“…A job ‘more-than-well done!'”

Mr. Reamer, Greetings!

After many years in business, I am well aware that supervisors and managers often hear from customers when they have a complaint.  However, I truly believe that it is incumbent upon us to communicate with those in supervision and/or management when one of their employee’s renders exemplary service.  Such is the case with the experience of me and my wife, Mary Jane, with Ben Lehman.

We experienced a house fire on May 23rd of this year, and our insurance company, American Family, contracted with Enservio to handle the personal contents portion of the claim.  Ben and Bobby (forgive me, but I have misplaced his card, and I can’t recall his last name) were with at our property every day for a week meticulously recording an inventory of every item as each was carried out of the house. 

Mary Jane and I joined them every afternoon when we were able to leave our places of employment.  One of the key things that blessed me was how gentle, patient and compassionate these two gentlemen were in their treatment of and in their communication with my wife.  Mary Jane, I am sorry to say, is a ‘clutter bug,’ and lately had even bordered on being a ‘hoarder,’ much to my chagrin.  I know this must have been, in some way, problematic for Ben and Bobby, because (in my opinion) there was just too much ‘stuff,’  Yet, neither of these gentlemen ever uttered one negative comment nor did they communicate any attitude of being judgmental about this..

Then something occurred that really blessed me, almost beyond words, for Ben’s demonstration of sensitivity toward my wife’s feelings.  Being in the house when the fire occurred, though she was quite traumatized afterward, she maintained a cool and level head during the fire event itself.  Not only was she able to escape the home unscathed, but she also thought to grab her purse on her way out of the house, and she called to our two dogs who followed her out of the back door.  After she secured them in her car, she returned to the house and attempted to re-enter it in order to save her cats.  The black smoke drove her back and out.  She called 911 and then me.

When I arrived on the scene, the firemen had carried one of the cats out dead, and then later onde of them found one alive.  She was taken to the vets and eventually made a full recovery and is now with us in our rental home with the two dogs.  However, the other cats’ fate was unknown.  When I arrived at the property on Thursday, May 30th, Ben asked me to step inside the house and speak with him privately.  He told me that they had found the rest of our cats – dead and badly decomposed.  Now, rather than simply telling my wife, “Mrs. Preston, we’ve found your dead cats,” he, instead wanted to speak with me first knowing that I would know best how to share this news with Mary Jane.  He told me that he knew that some people needed to physically bury their dead pets to achieve full closure.  He wanted Mary Jane to make that decision, but he did not want her to have the visual memory of her dead and badly decomposed cats.  Therefore, he had found in the home some beautiful wooden boxes she had purchase, and though they were badly scorched by the flames, Ben was able to open them, use them a little caskets – one for each cat- and them secure the lids.  Therefore, if Mary Jane wished to bury her pets, they were ready for burial in such a manner that she would not be furthered traumatized by the sight or the smell of their rotting corpses.

Now, I had previously prepared Mary Jane for this, and in her grieving process at losing them and ‘letting them go,’ emotionally, she was at that place where she could ask Ben to dispose of them for her, but what touched us both deeply is how gracious and sensitive Ben was to take into consideration, in such a gracious and gentle manner, Mary Jane’s feelings and to give her such a choice, either of which would have been fine with me, because it was an important part of her healing.

I thank Ben for this on site, but please do, for me and for Mary Jane extend our heart-felt thanks to him once again, and please, as his immediate supervisor, commend these two gentlemen for me on a job “more-than-well done!”

Respectfully yours,

A Very Thankful Insured