EDNA, Texas - Trey Ganem, a custom casket maker in Edna, is stepping in to help the victims of the Uvalde school shooting.
The shooting took the lives of 19 children and two teachers. Ganem met with many of the families Wednesday, a day after the shooting.
He says, transforming the caskets into more than just an object, helps the families remember the good times.
Ganmen tells FOX 26 that he cannot go into too much detail on the casket, while he showed the first casket he will work on.
"This casket is for an adult, for a very beautiful person, who tried to protect children," said Trey Ganem, Soul Shine Inc. "I sat with the family. I was drawn to this casket, especially after hearing the stories."
He says meeting with the families one-on-one is a special part of the process.
"Building that relationship, being able to go to their homes is something that is very emotional for me," said Ganem. "To listen to them talk about their loved one, it helps me incorporate the design for these caskets. When people talk about what they loved, they start smiling. Even though it’s this horrible time, they’re remembering the joy and the love their loved ones had."
It’s been a community effort, Trey says Friday morning they’ll be receiving 17 children’s caskets from Georgia and six caskets are set to be taken down to Uvalde by Sunday.
"It’s not a box anymore. It's a beautiful creation that represents their loved ones," said Ganem.
Trey has stepped in before to help grieving families, like murdered Ft. Hood soldier Vanessa Guillen, and 4-year-old Maleah Davis, who went missing back in 2019 and was eventually found on the side of the road in a trash bag in Arkansas.