Making Final Decisions
When planning a loved one’s funeral in a short time frame you might feel vulnerable and hurried into quick, hasty decisions. We suggest consulting with other family members, your pastor or close friends to discuss your options and concerns with them. Bring a trusted observer to the funeral arrangement’s conference.
The first step in planning a funeral is to determine if the deceased had specific requests or a funeral plan in place. These would be the wishes of the deceased and care should be observed to comply with their requests. We will want to incorporate these requests into the funeral planning. Unfortunately the overwhelming majority of people do not have funeral plans in place. As a family member, you may be left with a seemingly daunting job of creating an appropriate, meaningful send off for your loved one. We will take as much time as you need to understand all your options. We want you to ask questions and feel comfortable with the answers.
If no funeral planning instructions were left by the deceased then you will need to determine what type of funeral arrangements to make. Only choose the funeral services that you want. You will not be pressured into something that you do not want.
- Traditional funerals typically include a time for viewing and a service followed by a burial in the ground, vault, mausoleum or niche. It may include a graveside ceremony. Other items usually purchased under this heading include a hearse, a grave liner, headstone and the opening and closing of the grave.
- A visitation as part of the funeral arrangements, whether final interment will be burial or cremation, you will need to decide on an open or closed casket. If the deceased had not expressed prior wishes and there has been an accident or long illness some families opt for a private viewing and then a closed casket with pictures of the deceased on display.
- With cremation you have the option to use a cremation casket for the visitation at the funeral home or other location (church hall, etc.)
- Direct cremation or Direct Burial without a viewing – If choosing this option the family should be aware that they can arrange a brief private viewing at the funeral home without cost.
When choosing either burial or cremation the body will not need to be embalmed. We will not embalm the body without permission and law does not require it. However, refrigeration will be required after 24 hours if embalming is not selected; and may limit the visitation and the presentation of the deceased.
Direct Cremation can be followed up with a ceremony for the burial or placement of the ashes in a niche. Other popular choices are a scattering service or a memorial service at a later date.
A death that occurs out of town truly is the most expensive type of arrangement to be made. However, it is done frequently and involves the services of two funeral homes. If the distance is greater than a hearse would typically travel the deceased remains will need to be flown. Special arrangements will need to be made for this with the airlines. We are able to make these necessary logistical arrangements.
According to the FTC Funeral Rule we must give you a General Price List; and provide an itemized statement of the cost of all goods and services you have selected. You can get the GPL information in person or on the phone in the comfort of your own home. You may ask for pricing and information to be e-mailed or faxed to you, but these two options are not mandated by law. But we will accommodate you. *Please note if state or local law requires you to purchase a particular item. We will disclose this in writing on the itemized statement of the cost of all goods and services you have selected.