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What Exactly Is Cremation:

There are generally two types of methods for the final disposition of a persons body after they have died; placing the body in the earth via burial, or exposing the body to extreme heat so the physical body combusts - cremation

  • In the United States, in 1972, only five percent of families chose cremation. By 1999, those selecting cremation had grown to approximately 25%. Although statistics vary, the overall cremation rate today has remained relatively steady at 25%

 There are several reasons why the number of families selecting cremation have increased including:

  •   It has become increasingly more difficult for families to get together because of distance.
  •   Family traditions have changed as our society has become increasingly more mobile.
  •   Perceived cost barriers related to a traditional burial.

Cremation may provide families with the ability to schedule services further into the future which may help accommodate the need for advanced scheduling for jobs and travel.

Over the years, I have notice traditions among our cremation families have gone through significant changes.  Early in my career,  memorial services and visitation were never considered an option as cremation was viewed as "immediate".  Today, however, just the opposite seems to be the case; the majority of our families selecting cremation are also memorializing their loved one's memory through public visitation and services, with cremation occurring AFTER the services.

 Your Family Has Chosen Cremation, What's Next?

At the time of death, the body is brought to the funeral home and will remain there until all the legal documents are prepared and signed by the appropriate parties.  During this time an arrangement conference will take place to discuss how your family wishes to proceed with services.  Cremation Services can be broken down into three basic categories:

  • Traditional Cremation - This type of service would include embalming of the remains, placing them in a casket suitable for public viewing and cremation, a visitation period (typically afternoon or evening), and a traditional style funeral either at church or the funeral home.  After the funeral, the body is then taken for cremation with the ashes being returned to the family after the process is complete.

Do we have to buy a casket?  Whenever a body is viewed publicly it is necessary that it be placed in a casket of some sort. Selecting a casket is a personal choice and one that should not be taken lightly. With that being said, it is not necessary to spend large amounts of money on any casket, especially those used for cremation.  We are very proud to offer caskets suitable for view to families that select our funeral home as inexpensively as $230.00.

  • Cremation With Memorial Service - The term Memorial Service is specific to cremation in that the body is not present at the service.  The memorial service typically uses memorabilia, photographs, and videos to present a visual tribute of a persons life.  These services can also be less formal than a traditional funeral and typically include times of reflections by family and friends.

Does this mean a family cannot have a visitation? No at all.  It is very common that families selecting this type of services will have an evening of public visitation followed by a memorial service the next day WITHOUT the body present.

  • Immediate Cremation - The phrase "immediate cremation" can be misleading.  With any service whether cremation or traditional burial there is a considerable amount of paperwork that must be completed before the disposition can take place.  Generally these documents can be prepared and completed within 24 hours, at which time disposition can legally be done.  The immediate cremation type services will have no public view, no memorialization of the deceased life, and families can use a minimum fiberboard container for transportation and cremation of the body. 

What About the Cost?

By comparison the cost of cremation has increased significantly compared to the cost of traditional burial.  This is a direct result of the amount of Natural Gas that is required to maintain the extremely high temperatures during the cremation process.  As the cost of fuel increases so will the cost of cremation.  Each service is unique, and therefore the overall cost of the services selected will vary on a case by case basis and should be evaluated by each family individually.

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