Death is serious business. So any brand that becomes part of a funeral has clearly made an impact on someone’s life–for better or for worse.
Now the public must decide how it feels about Burger King being part of the funeral procession and burial ceremony for David Kime Jr., who died recently at the age of 88 in Pennsylvania where he lived (and regularly ate WHOPPER JRs). In fact, Mr. Kime was such a loyal fan that his local BK made 40 of the sandwiches for his funeral procession, including one that was set on his coffin and lowered into the earth where it will presumably sit unchanged for thousands of years.
The public knows well how unhealthy fast food can be for us, so combining the images of a Burger King sandwich with that of a dead man–and a World War II veteran at that–may not be an ideal PR situation for the brand. Nevertheless, Mr. Kime almost made it to age 90. By all accounts he lived a full and rewarding life that just happened to include lots of Burger King.
So now Burger King finds itself an awkward position: Should the brand embrace this story of a dead American hero who loved BK, or should official statements ignore it/distance themselves from it? For the public it may be a non-issue. Despite the controversy surrounding fast food, health, calories and life and death, most people who see this story will respond by asking, “Wait, did this really happen?”
We have a feeling Manti Te’o’s girlfriend may know the answer to that.