Editor's note: This column was submitted by Stockpickr member Susanne Owen, also known as the Trading Nymph.Hello Serious Investor Types, my name is Nymph and I normally hang out at Stockpickr.com. This is my first article submitted to TheStreet.com, so be gentle and join me because I am in the mood -- the mood for a little death. The death business, funeral homes specifically, is doing well even with increased life expectancies. Why is that the case? Only one word: acquisitions. Almost everyone in the business has been trying to buy up any decent independent funeral establishment, and if you were fans of Six Feet Under you would have already seen it coming. If you're not a fan, the protagonists' family funeral home business was always trying to be bought out by a national chain. (As an aside, wasn't the last 10 minutes of that series the best TV ending ever? Everyone in the cast ages and then dies ... perfect ending.) Getting back to death, the midyear quarters normally reflect the slowest time of year in the funeral services industry. If you want higher death volumes, check out the first and fourth quarters -- winter is very good for business. Each of the four companies I feature here has had a 20% or more gain in share price over a year period, with one sporting a 70%-plus gain.