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The Military Funeral Service

A military funeral service is an important way to honor a person who has bravely defended and served his or her county. Military funeral traditions can actually be traced back to ancient Greece and Rome. While today’s ceremonies still incorporate some of these ideas and principles, current military funerals also have a decidedly American feel. They are full of respect and honor, and can also be a source of comfort for surviving family members and friends. United States law now mandates the rendering of military funeral honors for an eligible... read more

Proper Etiquette for Approaching an Unexpected Death

Generally, the loss of a loved one is not a welcome circumstance. However, in many cases, individuals have a chance to say goodbye or make proper arrangements. In other situations, a death may be caused by an unexpected event. Unexpected deaths can be a great burden and create confusion for those who are left behind, so it is important to understand how to approach these very sensitive situations. Speak of the Deceased in the Present During funeral services, memorials and wakes for those who passed of unplanned circumstances, family and... read more

What to Do With Family Plots When Families Change

Sometimes individuals will find that their relatives have purchased comprehensive family burial plots for children and other loved ones to use. However, many find that it is uncommon for families to “stay together” geographically in a way to practically use these burial plots. In addition, children—and grandchildren—of the original deed holder will often wish to be buried with their spouse or pursue another form of burial. Is it Disrespectful to Not Use a Family Burial Plot? Many will question whether it is disrespectful to plan to be buried... read more

How to Dress Appropriately for a Funeral Service

Funerals are a way for the living to show respect for the deceased and to provide a place for mourning. Dressing for such an occasion is often one of the most important elements of funeral etiquette, and all attendees should know what to wear to meet the needs of the occasion in a tasteful manner.   Keep it Simple Funeral services are not events for attendees to attract attention, and it is respectful to keep attire as simple as possible. It is imperative for guests to avoid wearing anything flashy—such as hats, jewelry or ostentatious... read more

Estate Planning Basics in Texas

Estate planning is not a happy topic to think about—however, it is a necessary one. Not a single person will live forever, and it’s likely that you have acquired assets in your lifetime that will have to be distributed upon your death. While estate planning is an extensive process, there are some basic facts to be aware of in Texas. What Defines an Estate? An estate is comprised of real and personal property. Real property is land and any structures located on that land as well as oil, gas, and mineral interests. Personal property is cash,... read more

5 Things Everyone Should Know About Planning a Funeral

Planning a funeral for yourself or for a loved one requires organization in the midst of grief and sadness. Consult these guidelines on the most important elements of funeral planning that you and your loved ones should know. 1.) Prearranging provides you or your loved one with the opportunity to become informed about the plethora of options regarding the funeral or cremation service. No two services are alike, and individuals can choose to showcase videos, photographs, music, special readings or any other involved elements with family and... read more

What is the Proper Etiquette for a Memorial Service?

A memorial service is a service held without the remains present, usually occurring within a week of a loved one’s death (although this has the tendency to vary based on individual circumstances). The memorial service itself is more informal than a funeral, and guests can exchange stories and other personal tributes to celebrate the life of the deceased. Individuals planning or attending a memorial service are encouraged to learn about proper memorial service etiquette, as many people have varying opinions on what the service should look... read more

New Ways to Remember the Deceased

How do you remember those loved ones you have lost? For some, cherishing fond memories is sufficient. For others, something physical and tangible can be a meaningful aid to the grieving process. There are several ways in which memories can be tangibly preserved, all increasingly popular. This article will highlight just a few of them. Many of these trends involve DNA. A DNA sample of the deceased can be taken, with the help from professionals at the funeral home—in the form of a hair clipping or a fingernail clipping, typically. This provides... read more

New Trends in Cremation

As a way to memorialize the remains of the deceased, cremation is nothing new. However, there are many cremation trends that are new, and increasing in popularity every day. This field continues to open up new ways for families to preserve and cherish the physical remnants of lost loved ones, in ways that are specific to their values and preferences. This article will outline just a few of them. Among the biggest trends in cremation is the development of original keepsakes. Families commission original pieces of jewelry to be made—necklaces,... read more

Is an Outer Burial Container Required by Law?

When planning a funeral, and opting for burial in a cemetery, many individuals have obvious concerns about costs adding up and what ultimately is or is not required. A very common question that many people ask in the funeral planning process is that of whether an outer burial container is required by law. Outer burial containers, also known as burial vaults or grave liners, are most commonly used in that of a traditional funeral. Ultimately, this structure is put in the ground prior to the burial and the casket is placed within it. An outer... read more

What Happens When Someone Dies Under Hospice Care, or In the Hospital

What happens when a loved one dies? What are the logistical steps that you must take to ensure that their body is properly taken care of, and carefully moved to the site of the funeral home? There are different sets of protocols depending on whether the death occurs at home, under hospice care, or in the hospital. This article will look at the latter two scenarios. For a loved one to die under hospice care is, frankly, easier to deal with than a loved one dying in other conditions. Practically speaking, there are simply fewer steps that must... read more

New Trends in Funeral Catering

Increasingly, funerals are not mere memorial services. Rather than being strictly somber and reflective, today’s funerals are often turned into celebrations of life. Family members take advantage of the opportunity they have to come together and enjoy family fellowship. They mourn together, but also look back on the deceased’s life with fondness, and use that fondness as a springboard for joyful and life-affirming parties. For many such celebrations, the event is restricted to the grounds of the funeral home. Grieving family members would... read more

Memorials that Honor Eternal Commitments

With Valentine’s Day at the forefront this weekend, I thought it would be appropriate to discuss ways that couples can honor their commitment to each other after the end of their lives. It’s true that “till death do us part” is a theme present in wedding ceremonies past and present—however, I for one know that many couples do not see that as the end, and look for ways to celebrate their love for one another for eternity. One popular way to do this, for couples who have opted for cremation, is to co-mingle their cremains together. What happens... read more

What Happens When Someone Dies at Home

Many of us hope that, when we die, we go peacefully in our sleep. We desire this for our loved ones, as well. However, dying at home brings a set of complications for the surviving family members. Who do you call? What do you do? This article will highlight some of the basics. Contrary to popular opinion, you cannot simply call the funeral home and ask for the deceased to be transported away. Funeral homes will not come to take the deceased until after the proper authorities have been called and a full medical investigation has been made. The... read more

Understanding the Difference between Funeral and Memorial Services

As cultural norms continue to change, the way we handle the passing of loved ones also evolves. Today, there are many ways that people choose to celebrate the lives of those they care about, leading some to question the true difference between funeral services and memorial services. With the introduction of new traditions and burial practices, many professionals may use the terms “funeral” and “memorial” interchangeably. However, there are some key differences that are worth noting if you are attending or planning a funeral or memorial... read more


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