For the third year in a row, a Nicholasville funeral home released dozens of butterflies in remembrance of loved ones who have died.
The event Thursday has become increasingly popular since it was introduced by Hager and Cundiff Funeral Home in Nicholasville. At the first release, people submitted the names of more than 100 loved ones who had died. This year, more than 300 names were submitted.
"I thought butterflies represent a new beginning," said Diann Cundiff, who owns the funeral home with her husband, Ron. "That's the whole significance of a butterfly. It gets a new beginning, and I think people who have passed away have a new beginning."
The funeral home orders butterflies from a company in Florida, which ships them packed in ice to keep them cool. They are then unpacked the day before to warm up for eventual release. Sixty Monarchs and 60 Painted Ladies were released Thursday.
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Butterfly releases have become popular at weddings and funerals.
"There was a funeral home in Texas that started out ordering just a few dozen and now they're up to ordering at least 2,000," Cundiff said. She said she'd like to see the Nicholasville event grow to that size.
"I'd like to go to the football field to do this," Cundiff said.