Star Tracks: Monday, May 16, 2016 42 years, 2,191 covers and 55,436 stories from PEOPLE magazine's history for you to enjoy
- From Taylor's Squad to Bey's Brood: How the VMAs Pick Who Sits Where
- Read the Cover Story: The Gosselins 10 Years Later: 'So Much Has Changed'
- James Spader Sells His Los Angeles Home for $4 Million
- Prince William Laughs Off a Mom's Request for Prince Harry's Number for Single Daughter: 'You Don't Want That!'
- 10 Celeb Confessions That Will Make You Never Want to be Famous
People Top 5
LAST UPDATE: Tuesday February 10, 2015 01:10PM EST
PEOPLE Top 5 are the most-viewed stories on the site over the past three days, updated every 60 minutes
- June 07, 1999
- Vol. 51
- No. 21
Texas Entrepreneur Patrick Fant's Dead-Simple Idea—art Caskets!—finds a Successful Niche in a Grave Business
The approach might set traditionalists spinning, but this year White Light expects to sell more than 4,000 of the colorful coffins, which cost $2,500 to $2,900 each. Clients include funeral homes and individuals looking for pricier custom designs, such as a pro bowler who ordered a casket with a ball at one end and pins at the other. "My mom collected angels," says Connie Jackson, a Missouri hairdresser who bought one adorned with cherubs for her mother's funeral in April. "So many people told me, 'She's with her angels.' "
The creative casket concept was born in 1997 when, during a long drive to make a sales call, Fant and Sternitzky, then coworkers at a Dallas radio station, began tossing around ideas for their own ideal funerals. Subsequently, using a vinyl laminate coating process, the pair made a prototype sunset coffin—which sat for a month in Fant's dining room, alarming visitors. Reception was considerably more positive at the National Funeral Directors Association's convention last year, where the pair were swamped with orders.
As for his own send-off, Fant, a married father of two, plans to follow the lead of an Elvis fan who ordered a casket decorated as a parcel stamped "Return to Sender." That's only fitting: At White Light, he says, "we like to call ourselves the Wrap Pack."
Treat Yourself! 4 Preview Issues
The most buzzed about stars this minute!