Morris-Baker understands that, in the fast-changing world of the current COVID-19 pandemic, members of our community will experience loss and may not be aware of current CDC guidelines regarding funerals. Morris-Baker will keep this page updated with the most current information available to us.


As of March 16, 2020, the CDC offers the following guidance:

  • Embalming can be conducted.
  • A funeral service can be held – including those who have died of COVID-19.
  • There is currently no known risk associated with being in the same room at a funeral or visitation service with the body of someone who died of COVID-19.
  • Decedents with COVID-19 can be buried or cremated. 
  • Click here to read the full CDC Funeral Guidance

The following information was received from the State of Tennessee April 30, 2020:

  • In response to public health concerns, Governor Bill Lee has issued several executive orders to contain the spread of COVID-19, including, on Tuesday, April 28, 2020, issuing Executive Order No. 30, which allows many Tennesseans to return to work safely while encouraging adherence to health and business operation guidelines.  The Order prohibits social gatherings of ten (10) or more people, but expressly states that religious services, rites, funerals and related gatherings are not “social” and thus are not categorically prohibited.   This includes memorial events and burial of deceased humans, whether held at a funeral establishment, church, cemetery, or other facility. 


    While not prohibited as a matter of law, the Governor’s Order strongly encourages that the public celebration component of funerals be postponed or attended only by close family members, and further urges adherence to the Centers for Disease Control health guidelines to the greatest extent practicable, including social distancing, wearing facemasks, and frequent handwashing.  Vulnerable populations should take particular precaution, including staying at home as much as practicable, and those who are sick or experiencing COVID-19 symptoms should stay at home and contact their health care provider or county health department to receive a COVID-19 test, as appropriate. 

National Cemeteries as of June 9, 2020: 

  • VA Cemeteries: All Department of Veterans Affairs' (VA) national cemeteries remain open and continue to provide interment for Veterans and eligible individuals during this health crisis. Committal services, which had been discontinued on March 23, will resume starting June 9 in all but two cemeteries. Families with interments scheduled on or after June 9 will be offered the option of a committal service at the time of interment. 
  • VA national cemeteries will contact families who were unable to hold a committal service due to the COVID-19 pandemic to arrange memorial services for their loved ones beginning in July.
  • The National Cemetery Administration has implemented a robust set of measures that will allow us to conduct committal and memorial services while protecting the health and safety of Veterans, their families and our team members who serve them. VA national cemeteries continue to adhere to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines to prevent the spread of coronavirus.


Morris-Baker currently offers the following services—many of which are what the CDC suggests—to protect attendees:

  • Services in our Dogwood Chapel may be webcast for those who cannot attend.
  • Services in local cemeteries may be webcast for those who cannot attend.
  • When you arrive for an event, a member of our staff will open the door for you.
  • Hand sanitizer is placed throughout our facility.
  • Online tribute pages offer an alternative to register book signatures.
  • Members of our staff will gladly sign a register book on your behalf.
  • Arrangement conferences can be conducted over the phone or using a meeting software.
  • Our chapels offer adjoining family rooms to allow social distancing.
  • To meet CDC guidelines for group size, services will be staggered throughout the day and facility.
  • We follow CDC guidelines to clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces daily. This includes tables, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, desks, phones, keyboards, toilets, faucets, and sinks. During scheduled events, common touchpoints are cleaned regularly with EPA approved cleaner.


Morris-Baker will continue to monitor developments as they arise and will follow all new guidelines that are directed.


Our family and staff are here to serve, protect and honor each family as we have been for over 100 years. If you have any questions or concerns, please feel to email us at info@morrisbaker.com or call (423) 282-1521.


Preston McKee


Owner, Morris-Baker Funeral Home and Cremation Services


*CDC Information Copied from NFDA

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