‘We let their soul shine’: Artist designs caskets for TX victims

(NewsNation) — In the wake of the tragic Texas school shooting, people nationwide are offering to help.

While some donate money, others are donating their time.

Trey Ganem, the owner of a custom casket company, has been working around the clock designing custom caskets for 19 of the victims. Ganem makes coffins in Edna, Texas, and he immediately offered his support, for free, to all of the victims families.

“I’m known for helping in, you know, the tragedies,” Ganem told NewsNation during an exclusive interview.

The artist has designed custom caskets for previous mass shootings, including Sutherland Springs Church Las Vegas.

“For me, this is something that I’m trying to help the families with. I’m blessed to be able to bless. And that’s what we do. It’s just very emotional for me. And to see this time and time again, it’s just, I don’t understand it. Times are not what they used to be,” Ganem said.

Ganem’s company is called SoulShine Industries, and that’s exactly what they do: let one’s soul shine.

“They tell me about their loved one, and they tell me special specific things, and they light up when they’re talking to me,” Ganem said.

The process gives the grieving parents a way to immortalize their child.

“We’re creating the last thing that the parents can ever do for their child. And we’re making it with passion and purpose. We put all of our heart and soul into this thing,” Ganem said.

Ganem and his team made 19 caskets in just three days, but it required a lot of help from volunteers, friends, and family. Ganem’s friend, Bubba Hoffman hired a set of drivers to deliver the caskets, from Georgia to Texas, within 24 hours.

Then Ganem and his son Billy worked “nonstop” to get all of the caskets painted.

“God put us all in our same path. And it’s just been a blessing. There’s no way we could have done 19 caskets in three days without the help that we had,” Ganem said.

Ganem told NewsNation that his team isn’t making these caskets to show off their work, but truly to help the families in need. He says he treat everyone like they’re his own family, putting the same amount of effort into each casket.

“It’s a blessing to be able to do what we do,” Ganem said. “The main thing I want to tell people is we just don’t paint caskets here. We become part of the family. We tell their story.”

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