I have wanted to be a funeral director since a very young age. Growing up in a small town in New Mexico made my dream seem impossible as I had no connection to funeral service and the local funeral home was owned and operated by generations of the same family. Back then, we did not have the internet, so it made research on funeral service very difficult. The only library in town had a 1-page article on funeral service with minimum information. Although I knew nothing about being a funeral director, I had a longing to become one. Everyone has a “calling” in life and I knew this was mine.
I have now been a funeral director for over 2 decades; and have been honored to work alongside some of the best funeral directors in Dallas. Although 24 years has gone by, my passion for funeral service remains just as strong as it was for that young boy growing up in New Mexico. If there is one thing about being a funeral director that gives me the most satisfaction, it’s being able to be there for others during a time when they need it the most. To be that person to guide and comfort those who are grieving, is one of the purest and most amazing gifts you could ever receive. We are all human. That means that we will all lose someone that we love in our lifetime. We will all know a heartache that grief can give, and because of that, we can all show empathy to others. Going through your own grief opens your eyes to the pain that others feel. And even though our journeys are all different there is one thing that is the same; we all have loved someone and lost them. To be able to be there for others when they’re going through this journey is so sacred. To be able to hold someone’s hand and usher them through the funeral process makes you feel like you’re making a difference in the world. And to be able to care for their loved one is a true privilege that not many people get to have in their lives.
It’s difficult work. It’s emotionally exhausting. But being a funeral director isn’t just a job, it’s a constant reminder of how fragile our lives are and a reminder to appreciate every day that we have. This profession has taught me to appreciate the bigger things, which can often be mistaken for the little things. Every single day that I wake up next to the one I love I am lucky. Every single day that I talk on the phone with my mother is a gift. Death has taught me to stop putting things off until tomorrow, because tomorrow is not guaranteed. And death has taught me to tell those in my life how much they mean to me today, just in case they’re not here tomorrow.
I began my journey with the John P. Brooks Family of funeral homes in 2003, working directly with Mr. Brooks at the North Dallas Funeral Home location in Farmers Branch. In 2017, I was asked by Mr. Brooks to oversee the operations at Aria Cremation Service and Funeral Home – Northwest Highway. I am privileged to work for such an amazing family of funeral homes. Each morning I give thanks that I’m able to help a family in need honor a life that was loved and so dear to them. I truly believe that “No one is nearer to the heart of God than when they are helping those that are grieving”.
When I stand before God I can honestly say “I have no Compassion, Creativity or Love left. I used everything you gave me”. And for this, I have been divinely favored.
Thank you for placing your trust in me. I am and will always be forever grateful.
Dustin A. Martin Funeral Director #11629