To learn more about the life of a hearse owner, we spoke to needle felt artist Cheri Wilson, who spends her days as the sponsorship director of the Newport Beach Film Festival — and her free time with her beloved Hursula.
Daily Pilot: When did your love of hearses begin, and when did you acquire yours? Could you describe it?
Cheri Wilson: I attended the Orange County Market Place Halloween and Hearse Procession six years ago, and immediately decided I wanted one of my own. I was impressed by the unique craftsmanship of the individual cars. In my opinion, they are drivable works of art. A few months later, after test driving a couple different models, I chose mine — or rather she chose me: a burgundy 1984 Cadillac Superior 3-way.
DP: Did you name it? If so, how and why did you choose the name you gave it?
CW: My son named her Hursula, and that particular vanity plate was available, so it was meant to be.
DP: What made you choose to participate in this weekend's event?
CW: I have participated in every Orange County Market Place Halloween and Hearse Procession since owning my hearse. This show is one of the highlights of the Halloween season for hearse owners. The event is well organized, the entertainment is great and it's a lot of fun for the whole family.
DP: Are there any misconceptions out there about hearses that you want to clear up?
CW: The most common question I get is probably, "Aren't you scared to drive that thing?" My usual response is, "People don't die in hearses, so there are no lingering spirits" — at least not in mine. I believe that hearses are the Grand Chariots that carry the departed from this planet to… well… wherever you end up.
DP: How can people get more information about getting involved, if they have (or want to have) a hearse?