BECOMING a successful young business owner was something Bryan Perry had always dreamed of.
But never did he imagine himself the face of his own funeral business.
As the owner and director of Quality Cremation Services, and only 27 years old, Bryan is often asked by his clients why a "young, cheery man such as himself is involved in an industry as morbid and depressing as this".
But for Bryan, five years of overseeing and establishing Quality Cremation Services as a respected and professional business in the Rockhampton region, alongside his wife Kristy, has been a rewarding endeavour.
"My parents have worked in the industry for many years, which led me to start working for them when I was 15 years old," Bryan explained.
"Working in an environment where professionalism and compassion go hand-in-hand, my parents were the ideal trainers to help me establish my own business at the age of 19.
"Working in this industry does take a special type of person, however I get a great deal of satisfaction from caring for families at the most vulnerable time."
Sensitivity, professionalism and attention to detail are among the qualities on which Quality Cremation Services has built its reputation.
One of the most powerful means of his name getting out into the community has come down to word of mouth.
With the subject of life insurance flooding the airwaves, Bryan is offering free seminars to community groups and organisations to discuss and inform the public of the options available with funeral planning.
"While the majority of us know that it doesn't have to be left to the last minute, a number of life insurance plans can carry large premiums and over the years you are actually paying far more than what you need to for your funeral," Bryan said.
"Funeral planning, and even looking into the prospect of prepaid funerals, is far from 'morbid', but rather a smart provision for the future, in the same way that many of us take insurance out for the house, travel or our car.
"There are plenty of options available, and the option of a prepaid funeral can be very advantageous in the unlikely event that something does happen to that individual. Their family and friends are left without a financial burden and have more time to grieve."
Like many funeral directors, organising pre-paid funerals doesn't happen without the occasional odd request.
On one occasion, Bryan received a request from a man who wished to build his own coffin. He was a carpenter by trade.
"He did a great job too," Bryan added.
"Clients in the past have requested bright-coloured themed, all-black themed and even casual-dress themed funerals. These days, funerals are focused more on the celebration of an individual's life."
As well as specialising in organising pre-paid funerals, Bryan has four years' experience as a funeral celebrant.
For more information on funeral planning and prepaid funerals, phone 4921 2673 or visit www.qualitycremationservices.com.