You and your family must make many decisions and gather numerous facts and documents when a death occurs. We realize this is a very difficult time and want you to know we are here to help. Following is some information we hope you find helpful as you take care of your loved one's final arrangements.
• Notification of the Proper Authorities
• First Call to the Funeral Home
• First Visit to the Funeral Home
• Burial and Cremation Arrangements
• Commonly Used Terms
Notification of the Proper Authorities:
When a death occurs in a care facility, such as a hospital or nursing home, the professional staff will notify you and the necessary authorities. If a loved one was in the care of a hospice program, a hospice representative may give family members instructions and procedures to follow. In other situations, such as when a death occurs at home or in the workplace, a family member should contact emergency personnel and the person's physician if he or she was under a doctor's care.
In those first few hours . . .
* One of the first phone calls you will need to make is to the funeral home you will entrust with the care of your loved one. Funeral arrangers are experienced professionals who can provide information and guidance.
* Call or contact other family members and friends.
* Call clergy or other spiritual advisors.
* If your loved one wanted to be an organ donor, inform the hospital staff or the organization to receive the donations.
First Call to the Funeral Home:
The first call to the funeral home lets us know that a death has occurred. While you may ask us any questions at this time, you will be able to discuss the arrangements in detail later when we meet in person. During this initial call, we will gather information to be able to transport your loved one to the funeral home. We may ask you several questions, including whether your loved one made any prearrangements and whether you give your permission to embalm the decedent, if necessary. We will schedule a date and time for you to meet at the funeral home and will let you know what you should bring with you.
First Visit to the Funeral Home:
When you visit the funeral home, we will provide you with price lists and guide you through the entire arrangement process, explaining how you can create a memorable personal celebration of your loved one's life. The arrangement process may include preparing and filing the official death certificate; scheduling the location, date and time of services or events; selecting a casket, urn or other items; preparing an obituary notice; scheduling vehicles; and selecting pallbearers. You may also sign necessary authorizations or make arrangements to have them signed by the appropriate family members.
Feel free to bring any photos, music or memorabilia so that we can discuss how you would like your loved one to be remembered. More and more people today choose to personalize the funeral services they plan for their loved ones. We will listen and assist you in planning a loving tribute that captures the spirit of the person whose life you wish to honor.
The following checklist will help you remember what information about the decedent and items will be needed when meeting with a funeral arranger.
* Full legal name
* Home address
* Social Security number
* Date of birth
* Place of birth
* Father's name
* Mother's maiden name
* Veteran's discharge papers (DD-214)
* Recent photograph
* Highest education
* Place of burial (if applicable)
* Clergy name and phone number
* Survivors (name and relationship)
* Insurance policies (if applicable)
Burial and Cremation Arrangements:
If you choose interment, you will need to select a grave space, lawn crypt or mausoleum space and will want to choose a memorial or monument.
If you choose cremation, remember that you can plan a visitation and funeral ceremony to be held before the cremation. Another option is a memorial service to be held after the cremation with the urn present and/or a display of photos and other items that illustrate the life of your loved one. You also have memorialization options at the cemetery, including permanent placement of cremated remains.