Aftermath, Inc.: Cleaning Up After CSI Goes Home
Title: Aftermath, Inc.: Cleaning Up After CSI Goes Home
Author: Gil Reavill
The founders of a bio-remediation company known as Aftermath, Inc. describe how it was formed to provide professional services to families of suicide and homicide victims after the police leave, in an account that shares the stories of some of their moreremarkable cases.
A crime writer who thought he could handle anything confronts the worst of everything. Violent and unattended deaths…suicide…forensics…viral pathology…crime scene myths…The stories behind Aftermath, Inc. are stranger than fiction, and utterly human and compelling.
Like most people, true-crime writer Gil Reavill had never actually experienced a fresh crime scene. That is, until he met Tim Reifsteck and Chris Wilson, owners of Aftermath, Inc., a company in the new field of “bioremediation.” In the mid-80s, when a sea change occurred in the way biohazard clean-up was handled, no one in traditional cleaning or janitorial services would come within ten feet of a blood-spattered crime scene. Into this void stepped lifelong friends Tim and Chris, who filled a desperate need by founding their company. For the guys of Aftermath, no crime scene is too bloody to clean.
Aftermath, Inc. traces their history, introducing their clients and employees, and the cops, coroners, and detectives they encounter in their work. Gil goes on scene and works side by side with the Aftermath technicians. He tells the stories that led up to some of Aftermath’s most grisly clean-up jobs, taking us on a journey through the suburban Midwest where the company is based, home to some of the quietest, calmest, most ordinary blocks in the world, which hide much darker undercurrents beneath.
The issues that the Aftermath crew members face on a daily basis range from the mundane (What’s the best way to suppress the urge to regurgitate?) to the lofty (How does being exposed to death on a daily basis alter one’s personal philosophy?). Reavill approaches his task with respect and compassion, taking as his mantra a line from the Roman poet Terence — “Nothing human is foreign to me.”