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. 

As of March 23, 2020:

  • VA Cemeteries: Starting March 23, 2020, as a matter of public health and safety, committal services and the rendering of military funeral honors, whether by military personnel or volunteer organizations, will not be conducted  until further notice at VA national cemeteries.  Immediate family members (limited to no more than 10 individuals) of the deceased may choose to witness the interment if desired.  There is no service involved with witnessing an interment.  Families will be able to view the interment of their loved one from a safe distance. Click here to view a video explaining how and why the VA adjusted operations. 


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

Morris-Baker Funeral Home & Cremation Services
Phone: (423) 282-1521
2001 E. Oakland Ave., Johnson City, TN

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