• Germany's news in English

Miss Farewell: the beauty contest to die for

DPA/The Local · 17 Jul 2015, 11:03

Published: 17 Jul 2015 11:03 GMT+02:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

“It is wonderful to show this depressing taboo theme in another light for once,” said winner Rahel Merks.

Merks, who has large eyes and a smile that beams from one side of her face to the other, beat of competition from 46 other competitors to be crowned “Miss Farewell” - the most beautiful undertaker in Germany.

The 36-year-old runs her undertaking firm with her husband in Lachheim, Baden-Württemberg and clearly has a passion for her work.

“I am a last event manager ” she jokes. “I am counsel and companion. I have an intimate relationship to people.”

After Merks' brother-in-law brought the competition to her attention she sent a few photos to the jury and a short description of herself.

Lust for life

The judges noted that it was not only her physical beauty that made Merks stand out, but her lust for life too.

“Beauty is always about maturity and character,” Merks herself said. “I wouldn't have anything to do with Miss Baden Württemberg.”

But other reactions from within the industry were somewhat more grave.

“In this sensitive line of work, that's really pushing it,” said Hans-Joachim Möller, manager of the association of independent undertakers.

Rolf Lichtner of the Association of German Undertakers was more sympathetic, saying the competition was “a nice joke” and that “it doesn't hurt when an undertaker is also beautiful.”

Story continues below…

Lichtner also points out that the profession is by no means struggling for life.

"It is an attractive profession because its offers variety and a human touch," he says, pointing out that there are more people trying to get into the business than there is demand for.

But Merks' husband Stefan is delighted.

“I often tell my wife how beautiful she is,” he says, grinning. “Now finally she believes me.”

For more news from Germany, join us on Facebook and Twitter.

DPA/The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
These are Germany's top ten universities
The new library of Freiburg University. Photo: Jörgens.mi / Wikimedia Commons

These are the best universities in all of Germany - at least according to one ranking.

Introducing Swabians - 'the Scots of Germany'
Photo: DPA

These Southern Germans have quite a reputation in the rest of the country.

Woman sues dentist over job rejection for headscarf
Photo: DPA

A dentist in Stuttgart is being taken to court by a woman whom he rejected for a job as his assistant on the basis that she wears a Muslim headscarf.

Isis suspect charged with scouting Berlin attack sites
Photo: DPA

German federal prosecutors said Thursday they had brought charges against a 19-year-old Syrian man accused of having scouted targets in Berlin for a potential attack by the Isis terror group.

Berlin Holocaust memorial could not be built now: creator
The Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe, in Berlin. Photo: DPA.

The architect of the Berlin Holocaust memorial has said that, if he tried to build the monument again today, it would not be possible due to rising xenophobia and anti-Semitism in Germany and the United States.

'Liberal' Germany stopping Europe's 'slide into barbarism'
Ian Kershaw. Photo: DPA

Europe is not slipping into the same dark tunnel of hate and nationalism that it did in the 1930s - mainly thanks to Germany - one of the continent's leading historians has said.

Eurowings strike to hit 40,000 passengers
Travelers impacted by the strike on Thursday wait at Cologne Bonn airport. Photo: DPA.

The day-long strike by a Eurowings cabin crew union is expected to impact some 40,000 passengers on Thursday as hundreds of flights have been cancelled.

Deutsche Bank reports surprise quarter billion profit
Photo: DPA

Troubled German lender Deutsche Bank reported Thursday a surprise €256-million profit in the third quarter, compared with a loss of more than six billion in the same period last year.

US 'warned Merkel' against Chinese takeover of tech firm
Aixtron HQ. Photo: DPA

The German government withdrew its approval for a Chinese firm to purchase Aixtron, which makes semiconductor equipment, after the US secret services raised security concerns, a German media report said Wednesday.

Long-vanished German car brand joins electric race
Photo: DPA

Cars bearing the stamp of once-defunct manufacturer Borgward will once again roll off an assembly line in north Germany from 2018, the firm said Wednesday.

10 German clichés that foreigners get very wrong
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
10 ways German completely messes up your English
Germany's 10 most weird and wonderful landmarks
10 things you never knew about socialist East Germany
How Germans fell in love with America's favourite squash
How I ditched London for Berlin and became a published author
12 clever German idioms that'll make you sound like a pro
23 fascinating facts you never knew about Berlin
9 unmissable events to check out in Germany this October
10 things you never knew about German reunification
10 things you're sure to notice after an Oktoberfest visit
Germany's 10 most Instagram-able places
15 pics that prove Germany is absolutely enchanting in autumn
10 German films you have to watch before you die
6 things about Munich that’ll stay with you forever
10 pieces of German slang you'll never learn in class
Ouch! Naked swimmer hospitalized after angler hooks his penis
Six reasons why Berlin is now known as 'the failed city'
15 tell-tale signs you’ll never quite master German
7 American habits that make Germans very, very uncomfortable
Story of a fugitive cow who outwitted police for weeks before capture
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd