About Passages International

Passages International, Inc. was founded in 1999, when the demand for greener funerals was at its earliest stage. With green funerals now mainstream, Passages is dedicated to providing sustainable choices that allow families to have a unique, meaningful funeral experience. We are a family owned and operated business, and our environmentally-friendly products are designed to let families and funeral homes create a funeral that truly honors a loved one, meets their values, and celebrates their life.

With Passages products, families can curate a funeral that truly reflects their loved one.

We partner with funeral homes around the world to help them cater to today’s modern consumer. People today want more efficient cars, less wasteful products, and are green-minded in all areas of life. These values don’t simply disappear when planning a funeral, and families have become disenchanted with what is traditionally offered by funeral homes. We believe that we can all do better, for those we serve, for ourselves, and for the communities we live in. Nobody deserves to be laid to rest in a cardboard box, or receive their loved one’s remains in a plastic container, but until recently these have been the only option when declining traditional caskets and urns. We are here to change that.

We design and produce many of our own products, and stand behind our unsurpassed quality and service. We are proud to be approved by Green America as a socially and environmentally responsible business. You can read more about Passages’ business practices in our Green Statement below. We are also a member of the Green Burial Council, an organization working to make burial more meaningful, simple, and sustainable, and have been a member since their inception. We offer by far the greatest variety of products that have been approved by the Green Burial Council.

Over half of Americans today want greener funeral options. Over half of American families today choose cremation, and roughly half of those families will scatter. At Passages, we offer the most complete selection of sustainably produced and biodegradable urns, caskets, and memorial products. We are dedicated to offering personalized options to families who desire environmentally-friendly choices for their end-of-life rituals.

Meet Passages International

Passages International, Inc. was founded in 1999, as the now rapidly growing trend for greener funerals was at its earliest stage. Passages is a family owned and operated business, and we have over 75 years of combined service to the funeral industry. Our family has been serving the funeral needs of communities in Northern New Mexico and Southern Colorado for almost 50 years.

Darren Crouch

Darren Crouch – President and founder of Passages International, Inc.

Over the past several years, Darren has been published in The Director Magazine, The American Funeral Director Magazine, Funeral Business Adviser, The Cremationist and the ICCFA Magazine. He has also been quoted in both the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal and has spoken at several national and international conventions including the Asia Funeral Expo, the National Funeral Directors Convention and the ICCFA Convention.

Darren holds a BSc. (Hons) degree from Manchester Metropolitan University in Manchester, England and now lives with his wife and two daughters in New Mexico, an area renowned not only for its exceptional beauty but also for its leadership in solar power, green building, and design.

Direct: 505-234-1604  |  Email: darren@passagesinternational.com
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George Karchirisky – Operations Manager

George thrives on the fast pace and problem solving needs of the business. Combining his operational experience with a green personal focus, George strives to maximize efficiency and accuracy so that grieving families receive what they need in order to best honor their loved ones and begin healing. Outside of work he is passionate about cooking, writing, and is very active in the local music scene.
 
Direct: 505-317-9095  |  Email: george@passagesinternational.com
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Sally Price-Brittenham – Purchasing and Logistics Manager

Sally was born in Albuquerque and has lived in Baltimore and South Florida, where she spent her free time eating Maryland Blue Crabs and body surfing. She eventually made her way back to New Mexico where she enjoys hot pilates and yoga, and relaxing in her garden under the great New Mexico sky. She brings a decade of wholesale purchasing and import/export logistics and management from the home furnishings and accessories industry to Passages International.

Direct: 505-273-5124  |  Email: sally@passagesinternational.com
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Lyle Griffith – Administrative Manager

Lyle was born in New Mexico and returned after several years living in Phoenix, where he worked in customer service and trade school management. He has a degree in English Language and Literature and joined the Passages team in early 2016, beginning in customer service and eventually moving into operations. He spends his free time traveling and going to concerts, lifting weights, attending football and baseball games, and enjoying the beautiful New Mexico outdoors with his partner and two puppies.

Direct: 505-234-1798  |  Email: lyle@passagesinternational.com
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AJ Craig – Inside Sales Representative

Direct: 505-307-6002  |  Email: AJ@passagesinternational.com, sales@passagesinternational.com
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Kilian Rempen – Marketing Coordinator

Kilian was born and raised in Albuquerque, but lived in Los Angeles, Boulder, and Bangkok before coming home and joining Passages in late 2017. Kilian studied advertising and marketing at Loyola Marymount University, and when not working can be found skiing, climbing rocks, seeing live music and tasting new tequilas.

Direct: 505-273-5149  |  Email: kilian@passagesinternational.com
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Anais Dueñas – Marketing Coordinator

Anais manages our social media outreach and video content. She was born in Albuquerque, raised in Chattanooga, TN, and is glad to be back in Abq. She studied Journalism and Electronic Media at the University of Tennessee. In her spare time, she’s watching movies, taking pictures, and trying new restaurants and breweries.

Direct: 505-273-5149  |  Email: anais@passagesinternational.com
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Britt Gallagher – Art Department and Graphic Designer

Having worked as a graphic designer for 26 years in New Mexico and the Pacific Northwest, Britt is thrilled to have joined the green team at Passages. He spends most of his free time reading, painting, writing and spending time with loved ones while enjoying the sunny days and starry nights of our beautiful state.

Direct: 505-273-5149  |  Email: artdept@passagesinternational.com
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Ratheesh Nair – Bookkeeping

Direct: 505-234-1719  |  Email: accounts@passagesinternational.com
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Armando Hernandez – Floor & Freight Supervisor

Office: 505-830-2500  |  Email: armando@passagesinternational.com
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Joe Cano – Mezzanine & Small Package Shipping Supervisor

Office: 505-830-2500  |  Email: joe@passagesinternational.com

Our Mission and Philosophy

Our goal is to provide innovative, compassionate, and meaningful offerings to enrich and personalize the memorialization of a loved one while always keeping an eye on environmental impacts and allowing families to give back to the planet that took care of them in life.

Passages believes in the power of ritual to transform and comfort. At death—the final rite of passage—we use ritual to celebrate, honor, and safeguard the memory of a life. By providing compassionate offerings for personal expression, Passages hopes to help  mark the passing of a special soul.

Green Statement

Our natural environment is a finite and fragile systemplantingthat we must all take responsibility to protect. Passages International, Inc, prides itself on being a responsible member of the business community, and we convey to our employees the significance of leaving the environment better than we found it.

Passages is committed to creating environmentally-friendly and biodegradable cremation urns, caskets and memorial offerings to families seeking unique and affordable products to celebrate the life of a loved one.

Passages creates and distributes the best quality products, produced without cutting down trees. In addition, most of our products are crafted by hand from sustainable or recycled resources, using antique molds and centuries old techniques. We use recycled cardboard boxes with biodegradable peanuts for packing and shipping, and are proud to support several conservation organizations dedicated to preserving our pristine planet for future generations.

The company adheres to the following practices:

In order to reduce gasoline consumption and carbon emissions, we assemble and produce several of our products here in Albuquerque, New Mexico. The products that we manufacture abroad are transported in the most efficient manner possible—small items are shipped within large items. In addition, our urns and caskets are generally shipped to our customers in cases of multiple units so that carbon emissions per unit are kept low during transportation. These simple solutions not only preserve our atmosphere and reduce the emission of greenhouse gases, but they also conserve limited oil reserves.

Passages is also active in recycling by reusing materials and reducing waste. Simply by recycling paper and cardboard it is possible to prolong the life of items and reduce waste accumulation.

In addition, many of our products contain significant percentages of recycled materials. For example, The Shell™ Deep Water Bio Urn is produced from 99% pre-consumer recycled paper and paper clay. Each is hand crafted and painted (with water-based paints) by skilled artisans, and is presented in convenient and discreet recyclable packaging. The Shell Urns are proudly made in the USA. The unique Scatter Tubes are created from recycled paper and cardboard, and contain no metal components. Once the Tube has been used to scatter the cremated remains of a loved one it can be recycled by the family.

All of our Earthurn® Biodegradable Urns are constructed using a two-step process that utilizes recycled cardboard and organic paper that is hand crafted from the bark of the mulberry tree. In order to create the paper, a sustainable system is employed, that harvests the bark of the mulberry tree while allowing it to continue growing.

In an effort to reduce energy consumption in our place of business, we turn off heating/cooling units, all lighting and all electronics at the end of each day. In addition, we make sure to activate the sleep settings on monitors and PCs. These simple acts alone can save $100’s in annual power costs and reduce our energy consumption.

For our employees we offer flexible schedules, pay competitive wages and provide a monthly health care contribution. In addition to our 401(k) program and profit sharing, we also pay for up to 20 hours of personal time off and vacation pay for our full-time employees.