Friday, August 29, 2014

Wall Of Memories

  • A Consistent Place of Healing- Wall of Memories
    This memorial wall is open to anyone who wishes to place a permanent, bronze plaque.  The plaque is custom made for your loved one and can include name, dates, personal history, poem, emblems, artwork, even cast bronze portraits. The Wall of Memories is located on the center pathway on the south side of the Elm Dormitory.
    Also, many families are choosing to scatter the cremated remains of their loved one in a favorite place; the ocean, or even in the skies above. While that may seem fitting at the time, it means that you do not have a consistent place to connect with the memories of the person you loved so dearly.
    Having such permanent place - in a cemetery, mausoleum, or cremation garden - that can be visited regularly by family and friends is an essential part of the time following a death. It becomes a focal point of memorialization, and gives everyone a special place to go to remember your loved one, or to commemorate important occasions. It can help to make a birthday or anniversary less painful.
    A permanent place to reflect on your loved one becomes a way of connecting to a family's past. Visiting the resting place of grandparents or great-grandparents may provide children with an anchor to their personal history. It is a connection to the past, to love shared. It truly honors the relationship you still have – and will always have – with that person.

Monday, August 25, 2014


In early America, home funerals were the practice everywhere, and each community had a group of women who came in to help with the "laying out of the dead." Visitation was held in the front parlor followed by a procession to the church and cemetery.
At the time of the Civil War, embalming came into practice for shipping bodies over a long distance. By the turn of the century, the newly formed National Funeral Directors Association was pressing its members to consider themselves "professionals," not tradesmen as the earlier coffin-makers had been. Regular use of embalming was encouraged, and the new "professionals" used it to suggest they were keepers of the public health.
However, according to a recent opinion from the Center for Disease Control in Atlanta, GA, there is no public health purpose served by embalming. It is not required by law except in unusual circumstances by a very few states. Refrigeration is the usual alternative to embalming when the body must be preserved for later disposition. In other countries embalming is rarely used. 
In some parts of North America, religious and ethnic groups have maintained the practice of caring for their own dead. With the spread of the Hospice movement, families are assuming more responsibility at the time of death, and home or church funerals are again returning. Those who have been involved with such funerals have found them therapeutic and meaningful, with costs being minimal.
When the term "traditional" is used it generally means:
  • A time of visitation with the family, during which the casket may be present ("viewing" is most often done by the immediate family and friends during private time),
  • A religious service in a church,
  • And/or a graveside ceremony for earth burial of the body or cremated remains.
The cost of funerals in recent years has risen to $5,000 or more, not including cemetery and monument expense. Ask the funeral home, if you use one, whether "professional services" are billed at a fixed fee, or by the hour. The more responsibility a family assumes, the more affordable a funeral can be. Schedule visitation and services at the home or church to limit costs. If there is no mention of a funeral home, your paper might print the obituary free. Perhaps a mortuary will be used only to transport a body or for refrigeration until the time of the funeral.
In fact, in most states, family members can file the death certificate and permits, allowing the family or a church group to handle all death arrangements without the use of a mortician. Some FCA affiliates arrange with cooperating funeral directors to provide a "traditional" funeral at a cost of under $1,000. For many people, this will be the most convenient choice. If that option is not available in your area, there are books that provide useful details for family involvement.

Friday, August 22, 2014

Beautiful Fairmont Memorial Park

Mausoleum crypts and niches are available for families choosing a burial or cremation with inturnment. Mausoleum entombment is considered to be the finest type of burial known to man. A mausoleum’s solid construction signifies durability, devotion and honor.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

The Stages of Grief

What are the stages of grief? A search of the internet will turn up articles on 4 stages, 5 stages and even 7 stages of grief. The concept of stages has evolved from the “5 stages of dying” popularized by Dr. Elisabeth Kübler-Ross in her book, On Death and Dying, originally published in 1969. According to Dr. Kübler-Ross, the stages that a dying person goes through are:
  1. Denial and Isolation — initially the person denies that the situation exists, “It cannot possibly be,” and may withdraw and isolate himself from others.
  2. Anger — the person becomes angry about the situation and may place blame on herself or others, “It’s not fair that this is happening to me.”
  3. Bargaining — the person makes a deal with God, “Let me live and I will do this …”
  4. Depression — the person is overcome with sadness and despair, “It’s hopeless, why bother with anything?”
  5. Acceptance — feelings of anger and sadness have subsided and the person accepts the reality of the situation and decides to make the best of it.

The Real Meaning of the Stages

Dr. Kübler-Ross’ stages have since been applied to grief and other forms of personal loss, such as loss of a job or onset of a disability. In her book, On Grief and Grieving: Finding the Meaning of Grief Through the Five Stages of Loss, Dr. Kübler-Ross says,
“The stages have evolved since their introduction, and they have been very misunderstood over the past three decades. They were never meant to help tuck messy emotions into neat packages. They are responses to loss that many people have, but there is not a typical response to loss, as there is no typical loss. Our grief is as individual as our lives.”
She goes on to say of the 5 stages, “They are tools to help us frame and identify what we may be feeling. But they are not stops on some linear timeline in grief. Not everyone goes through all of them or goes in a prescribed order.”

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Advance Directives Put Your Wishes in Writing

You should consider drawing up all (or a combination) of the three main types of directives:
  1. Living will – instructions for your preferred level of treatment (for example, whether to have a feeding tube or other forms of life support.)
  2. Durable power of attorney for health care – designation of another person to make medical decisions for you if you can’t make them for yourself.
  3. Do not resuscitate (DNR) order – whether you want to be resuscitated if your heart or breathing stops.
Advance DirectivesThese directives are legal documents but do not require a lawyer’s assistance. Many examples are available online and can be adapted for your particular situation, then signed by you and notarized. Each state has different requirements for these documents; forms that are specific to your state also can be found online. Most states honor another state’s advance directive.

When are directives used?

Your advance directives are valid only if you are incapacitated and not expected to recover. But in order for them to be followed, your directives must be known to your family and your physician. That’s why it is so important to put your desires on paper and give copies to your loved ones and your health care provider. You can also register your advance directives with your state (a handful of states, including Arizona, California, Idaho, Louisiana, Montana, North Carolina, and Vermont, have free registries) or, for a fee, with the U.S. Living Will Registry.
To get started, talk to your doctor about end-of-life decisions and options. Decide what’s right for you, and talk about your decisions with family and friends. Put your decisions in writing, and ensure those who will be caring for you have a copy.
Advance directives help you make things easier for your family and for yourself at the end of life. Make your wishes clear now.
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Wednesday, August 13, 2014

A How-to Guide for Funeral Arrangements

Here you can learn what to do if a friend or loved one has just died or if death is expected sometime soon. The following guides will take you through the steps of arranging a funeral from making the first call when someone dies to the various matters to be handled following the funeral.
  1. First Call

    The deceased is still at the place of death and a “first call” needs to be made to arrange for transportation of the deceased to a funeral home or other funeral service facility. 
  2. Deceased Transportation

    The First Call results in an initial transfer of the deceased from the place of death to a funeral home or other facility. In some cases, a second transfer may be required either — locally to another funeral home — or to another city for ceremonies and burial. 
  3. Funeral Services

    Planning a funeral involves making many decisions concerning funeral ceremonies, funeral products and final disposition of the body. For assistance in arranging funerals people usually turn to funeral directors. .
  4. Cemetery Arrangements

    If cemetery property has not already been purchased, it will be necessary to meet with a cemetery representative to purchase a burial or entombment space. In some cases, the funeral director can make these arrangements on behalf of a family. 
  5. Funeral and Memorial Products

    There are various options for purchasing caskets, grave markers, and other funeral merchandise. These products are available through a funeral home, cemetery, monument company, or other retailer. 
  6. Estate, Financial and Administrative Matters

    Following the funeral, the affairs of the deceased must be put in order. These matters range from sending death notices to filing death benefit claims to changing title of the deceased’s assets. 

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Good Etiquette Guide for the Surviving Family – Planning the Funeral

A funeral is a formal service of remembrance with the body present, in either a closed or open casket. Your funeral director or clergy can advise you on many aspects of etiquette relating to the actual funeral service.
If your loved one hasn't preplanned, you will need to make a number of decisions:
  • Where to hold the funeral—traditional choices include a funeral chapel or a place of worship, although funerals also are held in places that hold special meaning for the deceased. It is legal to hold a funeral on private property anywhere in the U.S. When choosing a location, consider its appropriateness for the type of service.
  • What kind of service—your clergy or funeral director can discuss your options, such as who will perform the service, who will give the eulogy, and whether to include music, a video or digital tribute, or a photo display. You’ll decide whether the service will be public or private and whether to have an open microphone for people to offer impromptu tributes. If the deceased was a military veteran, inform the funeral director so that appropriate measures can be taken to honor his or her service.
  • Open or closed casket? This is a difficult decision for many families. Do not feel pressured; do what you think best or what the deceased specified. If having the casket present is not an option for you for any reason, it is appropriate to hold a memorial service or celebration of life instead.
  • Whom to choose as pallbearers—traditionally close friends or business associates; also may be family members, although this is rare.
  • Whether to have a public or private interment. If the deceased is to be buried, generally there will be a funeral procession from the funeral location to the grave site, followed by a brief, simple service before the casket is lowered. Similarly, if the deceased has been cremated, the remains can be inurned during a brief ceremony at the cemetery or the ashes scattered at a desired time and place.

Thursday, August 7, 2014

What Can Be Done With Cremated Remains?

They can be placed in a niche in a columbarium, buried, scattered, or kept by the family. Cremated remains are sterile and pose no health hazard. Their disposition is, for the most part, not controlled, provided the landowner grants permission.

A columbarium is an assembly of niches de-signed to hold containers of cremated remains. It is most often located in a mausoleum with a cemetery and at some churches.

Earth burial can be done in a cemetery or on private property. Most cemeteries will permit two or three containers in one adult-size plot. Some (unnecessarily) require that you pur-chase an urn vault. For home burial, keep in mind that unless you have a family cemetery on your property, eventually the land is likely to be sold and the land used for other purposes.

Scattering cremains over an area that had significance to the deceased is legal in most jurisdictions. Although there are commercial firms which will handle the cremated remains for a fee, most families prefer to do this themselves. Remains that are being scattered should be processed by the crematory to reduce all frag-ments to fine particles. 

Scattering at sea is available to all veterans and dependents and is provided by the Navy or Coast Guard. Because sea burials are done at the convenience of the military, the family may not witness sea burial.

While federal regulations technically require cremated remains to be scattered three miles out from shore, the Environmental Protection Agency says they are not concerned about families scattering ashes at the beach and never enforce this regulation with private families. 

Keep the cremated remains in an urn or nice box. You can buy an urn from a funeral home or on line, or you can use something else. When cremains are being saved to provide memories, it's nice to put them in a container related to the de-ceased's life, such as a favorite vase, a special wine bottle, a terrarium, etc. 

Some funeral homes will suggest that you need to purchase a “temporary container”, but you have a legal right to refuse and use the con-tainer that comes from the crematory. 

Cremains can also be divided among family members to keep or to be sprinkled or buried in several different places (i.e. with a first and second spouse).

Sunday, August 3, 2014

We Have Years Of Experience

We have years of experience caring for families, from all walks of life. Each family comes to us because they know we are the leaders in our profession, dedicated to excellence in service, and have the highest integrity.

At Fairmont Memorial Park, we offer a wide variety of locations to choose from and prices to fit all budgets. To schedule a no obligation tour of the memorial park, please contact the office at (707) 425-4697. COA230.