By Jennifer Vazquez
UNION CITY –
Jeanette Infante is fully aware that her business is not your typical commercial profession. After all, she is in the business of selling monuments and headstones.
Monument Dealers, has been a constant in Infante’s life. The business was established by her father in the 1980s. Infante remembers working part-time, as a secretary, afterschool as a teenager at the store. Later on, she transitioned into a full-time employee at age 21.
“I was helping out (my dad), after school, since I was 12,” she said. “At 21, I went back working for him until I took over the business at 24.”
Monument Dealers, with offices in Union City, Linden and the Bronx, N.Y., prides itself on the close relationship it builds with its customers, Infante says.
“I usually do sales by visiting our clients’ homes,” Infante said. “I do this free of charge because it brings them comfort.”
The fact that Infante cares about her clients is evidenced by an act of charity she and her business performed earlier this year after Infante learned from her daughter about the tragic death of John Michael Graniello (Capote), 16, of Fort Lee, killed in an accidental fall from the top of the Palisades. Without having ever met the family or the boy, this act of kindness was something that she felt compelled to do.
“I never met him, or his (parents),” she said. “My daughter was the one that told me what had happened. However, as a mother I felt the pain.”
Infante came across the information needed to contact the young boy’s family, particularly the boy’s mother, Lazara Capote, in order to let her know that her business wanted to donate the headstone for Graniello.This compassionate act is something that is not only that of an understanding mother to a fellow grieving mother –thus showcasing the inexplicable bonds that mothers worldwide share –but that of a businesswoman who is completely convinced that, despite the fact her business revolves around death, grief, fatal accidents and morbidity, she finds the mission within her line of work to be nothing but positive and fulfilling.
“I like to think that I give people a type of closure,” she said. “I give them advice and comfort, because I genuinely feel for them and what they are going through.”