Marta Reyes applies makeup to the corpse Dina, her murdered daughter, in the "Lopez" funeral home. May, 2009
Peluca (Wig in English), waits at a crime scene for relatives of a murdered man hoping to sell them a funeral service. June, 2009
Peluca (wig in English) informs the relatives of a murdered person about the paperwork needed for the local morgue to release the body. September, 2009
Manteca, (lard in English) watches the reaction of three women after he notified them of the murder of a relative. June, 2009
Manteca, (lard in English) browses through the pages of a photo album to show a relative of a murdered man the styles of coffins that the family's budget can afford. June, 2009
Glendy Maldonado, 29, alternates her attention between the T.V. screen and the body of a murdered man inside the "Valles del Sol" funeral home while a man who washes cars outside the business kills time watching T.V. November, 2009
The body of a man is seen inside a metal box, left there while funeral home employees took a break from the embalming process. November, 2009
A funeral home employee carries a pewter cross, part of the decoration provided for the wake, to the house of a murdered man in a slum. September, 2009
"Valle del Sol" funeral home employees, Gabriel, left and Tono, right, eat chowmein sandwiches during a break from their night shift. August, 2009
"Don Carlos" owner of a car repair shop turned funeral home takes an afternoon nap after embalming bodies all through the night before. June, 2009
"Don Carlos", the owner of "Valles del Sol", a car repair shop turned into funeral home, prepares the body of a murdered man to be buried while other funeral service salesmen watch a comic show on T.V. August, 2009
Victor Ludwin, left, and Victor Daniel, right, tend to the body of their murdered brother Victor Barillas, 16, while their friend and funeral home employee helps them through the process in "Valles del Sol" funeral home. November, 2009
Neighbors carry the coffins of Ingrid Marisol Canis, 16, and her 8 months daughter after the pregnant mother was murdered by unknown assailants. Febrary, 2009
A Zopilote, a native species of buzzard, flies inside the National Cemetery. The funeral service salesmen in Guatemala are also known as "calaqueros" _skull mongers_ or Zopilotes because their relentless search for corpses. May, 2009

Guatemala's constant streak of murders, averaging 17 per day in 2011, creates a lucrative business for unregulated funeral homes. Less profitable enterprises, such as auto repair shops, are often turned into funeral homes.  

The funeral service salesmen are also known as "Calaqueros" (skull mongers) or “Zopilotes” (vultures), because of their relentless search for corpses.  They rush to crime scenes to gather information that will allow them to make a sales pitch to the bereaved relatives.

Guatemala City, 2009.