A woman has slammed ‘disrespectful’ undertakers for stopping at McDonald’s for food with a ‘dead mum’ still in the hearse.
Deborah Carlisle says she cried tears of anger when she spotted the funeral workers eating breakfast with the ‘occupied’ hearse.
The 57-year-old publicly shamed them by sharing snaps that show a suited man carrying the fast food giant’s take-out bag towards the wreath-bearing vehicle in Aylesford, Kent, last week.
However, Indian Funeral Directors have claimed one of their staff is diabetic and had permission from the grieving relatives to eat there to stop his blood sugar levels dropping.
Funeral director Sanjay Shah branded Deborah a ‘busybody’ who had ’caused havoc’ with her repeated calls and said the deceased’s family laughed off claims they should be refunded.
Mum-of-two Deborah has since rubbished the business’ explanation and declared she had ‘no sympathy’ even if the man’s diabetes was true because ‘other people can manage their disabilities’.
Deborah, from Boughton Monchelsea, Kent, said: “The whole car park was stood there with their jaws open. They couldn’t believe what they were seeing.
“I thought maybe this was the person’s last wish, but I watched and one of them get out, walked in there, came out with the bag and dumped it on the dashboard of the hearse.
“They stayed and started munching. I walked over and both of them were holding their burgers and I said it’s disrespectful. Disgusting. ‘What the hell do you think you’re doing?’
“Imagine if one of the funeral cortege had come in to get a bottle of water or something and seen the coffin and them munching burgers.
“When I called, I told them I think he should waive the fee for the customer. All day I was in total shock and I cried over it. It’s disgusting.”
The mum-of-two says the undertakers waited in the busy car park for around 30 minutes before they drove off to present the coffin at the deceased’s family’s house.
Deborah admitted she even called other local funeral directors to tell them about what happened before hearing Sanjay’s explanation.
Sanjay said Deborah called numerous times but even after he explained the stop-off was for ‘medical reasons’ she maintained her ‘rude’ stance.
However, 57-year-old Deborah was adamant that his business shouldn’t charge the family for the funeral.
Sanjay Shah said: “She’s a busybody. She should mind her own business. We’ve done everything with the permission of the son and I don’t know why she’s pulling the strings.
“She’s definitely not a nice lady. The way she’s spoken to me and threatened me. She said she’s going to be shutting my business down.
“She’s been creating a big havoc in our office. She’d spoken to a few people until I got the call and I told her she didn’t know the full story, so I explained it to her.
“We’re a respectable company. We’ve been doing funerals for 31 years. We are quite popular with the whole Asian and Indian community because we provide a special service.
“Both of our staff woke up at 5am in the morning, cleaned the cars, loaded the coffin and had to leave very early because we had to take the coffin to the family’s house first.
“To beat the traffic, we got to Aylesford early. One of our staff is a diabetic so they spoke with the son of the deceased and asked if it’s okay if they can have a bite to eat.
“The family straight away said we can do that and said ‘there’s a McDonald’s off the motorway’, then you can make your way to us.
“They asked if they had stopped when we got there, and we told them yes.
“This lady tells us we are going to do the funeral free of charge and I’ve spoken with the son and he started laughing. He asked me ‘who is this lady’ and said he will not accept it.”
However even after hearing Sanjay’s explanation that permission for the McDonald’s visit was granted by the family, Deborah remained unconvinced and still said that their behaviour was unacceptable.
She said: “It’s absolute bulls***. Whatever type of diabetes he is, he knows when to have his food to avoid going into a coma. Take a packed lunch and eat it discreetly, or buy your McDonald’s and go down a lane.
“The family did not give him permission to go to the McDonalds. When I phoned [the undertakers] and he said he was going to phone the son, but I told them not to because it would give them a shock.
“I don’t have any sympathy. I’ve got friends that have diabetes and they manage it. Both of them were stuffing their faces, not just one.
“If they’ve driven all the way from London without eating the correct food to stop them from going into a coma, well they shouldn’t be driving anyway.”
She posted her snaps of the incident to Facebook along with a link to the busy funeral director’s website.
Deborah’s post said: “Disrespectful. A hearse complete with coffin wreaths and flowers pars up to get a McDonald’s. People were astounded.
“Waited to check if they actually ate it and told him it’s disgusting and disrespectful while he munched on his burger.
“Then he drove off the wrong way round the car park to avoid my car.”
Deborah was a founder of the Madeleine Foundation, which supposedly campaigned for justice for Madeleine McCann and handed out leaflets suggesting she was not abducted.
The Metropolitan Police were contacted for comment.