PLAINVILLE - The community welcomed a new addition Sunday, as Plainville Funeral Home officially opened.
Over 100 relatives, neighbors, friends and Plainville officials joined Andrea Wasley and her family at a ribbon-cutting ceremony. It marked the culmination of a longtime dream for the third-generation town native, who brings 22 years of experience to the family-owned enterprise.
“I can’t believe this day is finally here,” Wasley said in between greeting visitors. “I’m excited. I’ve waited a long time for this.”
The funeral home was a venture more than two years in the making, following Wasley’s departure as one of the managing partners of nearby Bailey Funeral Home. When her former employer became a corporate operation, she made the decision to go off on her own.
She first pursued opening a crematorium, but was met with opposition by local zoning officials.
Construction on the new facility began last October. All of the building, landscaping and decorating was completed by Plainville contractors, led by Susco Building Group.
Following the death of her grandmother when Wasley was 17, Wasley’s experience with the funeral service inspired her to pursue the profession.
“My mother was very sick with cancer and when we went to see her at Plainville Memorial she looked the best she’d ever looked like before she got sick,” Wasley’s mother, Rhonda DiGiacomo, remembered. “I think it meant a lot to Andrea that they could make our family feel better saying goodbye.”
Seeing the crowd gathered at the 81 Broad St. funeral home brought tears to DiGiacomo’s eyes.
“It’s unbelievable the way the community has supported her,” she said. “It makes me so proud to be from Plainville.”
State Rep. William Petit Jr., a Plainville resident, presented the Wasley family with a proclamation from the General Assembly Sunday.
“They have been friends for a long time and are pillars in the community,” he said. “They took care of the services for my wife and two daughters 11 years ago and I’m here today to support the family.”
Wasley’s father-in-law, Alan, recalled her sharing her dream to open her own funeral home with him five years before.
“I’m so proud of her,” he said. “She did an unbelievable job.”
Neighbor Pat Beverley came to the celebration to congratulate Wasley and see the new facility.
“My daughter went to school with her,” she pointed out. “I think it’s just wonderful what she’s done here. It’s a beautiful thing.”
Erica Drzewiecki can be reached at 860-801-5097, @drzewieckinbh or firstname.lastname@example.org.