Frequently Asked Questions
There are many questions that you may have when it comes to planning funeral and cemetery arrangements. Listed below are funeral and cemetery FAQ that will assist you in the process.
What is the purpose of a funeral service?
It is the customary way to recognize death and its finality. Funerals are recognized rituals for the living to show respect for the dead and to help survivors begin the grief process. A “closure” of sorts must occur to help survivors adjust to their loss and recognize that a death has occurred. A funeral service provides the opportunity for friends and family to celebrate the life that was lived and allow the healing process to begin. There is a wide array of options for you to express the unique way you or your loved one lived life.
What is the difference between a Memorial Service and a Funeral Service?
A memorial service is a service without the deceased present. The deceased is present at a funeral service.
What do funeral directors do?
Funeral directors are caregivers and administrators. They make the arrangements for transportation of the body, complete all necessary paperwork, and implement the choices made by the family regarding the funeral and final disposition of the body. Funeral directors are listeners, advisors and supporters. They have experience assisting the bereaved in coping with death. Funeral directors are trained to answer questions about grief, recognize when a person is having difficulty coping, and recommend sources of professional help. Funeral directors also link survivors with support groups at the funeral home or in the community.
Can I customize my funeral service?
Yes, there are a variety of ways to customize a traditional funeral service. Today, many people see a funeral as a celebration of a life lived. Tradition still exists, and is very important to many and is always an option. Just as tradition is an option, so is personalization. A family can combine their wishes with tradition to whatever extent they choose. With any service selected, there are many ways to personalize and memorialize your loved one. We assist our families in personalizing a funeral service, and tailor it to the lifestyle and personality of the life that was lived.
What is a visitation?
A formal visitation provides a time and place for you to offer the family your expression of sorrow and sympathy. Visitation is typically held at the funeral home, and the deceased is typically present so that you can pay your last respects.
Why have a public viewing?
Viewing is part of many cultural and ethnic traditions. Many grief specialists believe that viewing aids in the grief process by helping the bereaved recognize the reality of death. Viewing is encouraged for children, as long as the process is explained and the activity voluntary.
How many types of caskets exist, and why are some more expensive than others?
Caskets are made of either metal (bronze, copper or steel) or wood. Prices vary, depending on the exterior and interior materials used. Bronze, a semi-precious metal, is more expensive than steel. Mahogany, a rare hardwood, is more expensive than the readily available softwood pine.
What is the purpose of embalming and is it required?
Embalming sanitizes and preserves the body, retards the decomposition process, and enhances the appearance of a body disfigured by traumatic death or illness. Embalming makes it possible to lengthen the time between death and the final disposition, thus allowing family members time to arrange and participate in the type of service most comforting to them. It is not required by law, but is common practice when a viewing is planned.
How much does a funeral cost?
Funeral costs vary depending on the funeral home and type of service selected. There are two types of costs associated with a funeral: (1) services provided by the funeral home and (2) merchandise such as a casket or urn. Please contact us for a more detailed explanation of your options.
Is everything included in the price given to me by the funeral home?
All charges involving the funeral home’s services and merchandise are available from our professional staff. We will provide a general price list with all charges.
Why should I consider pre-planning my funeral and burial arrangements?
As with any important event in life, funerals and burials require planning. You should plan your own service and how you choose to be interred, in advance, to spare those close to you from the stress of attempting to make wishes they think would please you. If you take the time to plan your service, those you care about will be allowed to grieve instead of worrying about arrangements. In addition, many pre-arranged services can be financed in ways that fight inflation and keep your investment safe.
What if I want to change something?
If you decide to make changes to your pre-arranged service, simply contact us and we will assist you in making any changes you feel are important.
How do I choose the right type of grave?
Because it is an important question, many things must be considered. What type of memorial do you prefer? How many burials do you expect to take place? Are you arranging for yourself or your family? How much do you want to spend? Answers to these types of questions will assist you to make the right purchase as graves vary by size, location and by price.
What options are available besides ground burial?
Besides ground burial, we offer other interment options, including community mausoleums, private mausoleums, and placement of cremated remains in an Indoor Chapel Niche or columbarium.
What about cremation?
Cremation is always an option and, contrary to some beliefs, allows for as many, or more, memorialization options than the traditional burial and service. Cremation, simply put, is reducing the body to ashes. Once the cremation is complete, the “remains” can be placed in an urn and buried, placed in a vault, or you can customize your cremation in almost any way you choose.
If someone is cremated, can there be a funeral service with the body present?
Yes, the deceased can be embalmed and placed in a ceremonial casket. With cremation the full funeral can be held without the expense of purchasing a casket or vault.
If I don’t have a funeral with the body present, I would still like to have some sort of ceremony so that family, friends, and associates can gather to commemorate the event. What are my choices?
Cremation offers a wide array of customization options to choose from. A private or public visitation can be held before cremation is done. A memorial service can be held in a place of worship or at the cremation provider’s facility, with or without the cremated remains. This can be delayed as long as necessary after the death to allow family and friends to gather from distant locations. Other possibilities include graveside services at the cemetery or columbarium. A scattering ceremony offers a personal touch only cremation can provide.
What if I have a question that isn’t addressed here?
Call our office or submit your question using the form to the right and we will be happy to answer it