What would happen if a family member, or you, died tomorrow?
There is nothing more heartbreaking and distressing than the death of a loved one. In most cases, after a death, you will have only a few days to make decisions for a funeral. Confronted with dozens of choices you must hastily and often under great emotional duress make decisions and then you must live with those decisions. Often you wonder would this be what he/she would have wanted? It is to be hoped that this book will assist you and your family as you maneuver your way through a tragic time.
“Funerals - Step by Step Planning,” is not connected to the funeral industry and being unbiased will introduce you to the fundamentals, procedures and guidelines that a funeral entails. The introductory chapter presents suggestions and expertise to guide you through the emotional task of preparing for the funeral. There are 45 concise guidelines, a so called “crash course.” The following chapters cover the 45 steps more thoroughly and in more detail.
As you navigate your way through the chapters, instruction and advice will assist you in making knowledgeable, informed decisions, or you will be provided with a website or phone number where you can find answers.
One of the most economically informative chapters is on the Funeral Consumers Alliance or Memorial Societies, like me, most of my family and friends had never heard of them. They are regional, nonprofit, nonsectarian societies, generally run by volunteers that keep costs for a dignified funeral to a minimum with their affiliate funeral homes. They have grown into one of the most respected non profit watchdog groups in the United States and Canada. By joining the organization, filling in a funeral guidance form and sending it to an affiliate funeral home you can have a simple, meaningful, dignified funeral, saving from 10% to a 40% discount off conventional funeral industry costs.
Some of the topics include:
- how to donate your body to science
- organ and tissue donation
- Funeral Consumer’s Alliance and memorial societies
- buying or renting the right casket
- purchasing an urn
- preplanning a funeral, an increasing number of people are planning their own - - funerals and specifying their funeral choices at their own pace
- last minute bereavement flights and compassionate fares
- visitation, viewings and embalming
- the funeral: traditional, graveside, private, non-commemorative
- body disposition options: burial, direct burial, cremation, direct cremation
- memorial services or a celebration of life
- how to write an obituary and death notice
- a guide to preparing and delivering eulogies
- recommendations where flowers are, or are not appropriate
- suggestions for appropriate music selections and poems
- choosing a cemetery and buying a plot
- memorialization and creating a special tribute
- reception after the service
- personal details to complete before a death: wills, living wills
- preparing your family for financial guidance when a death is imminent
- survivors guidelines to settling affairs of the deceased and information on how to secure financial help and benefits
- websites and phone numbers to contact when further information is needed
There are 5 preplanning forms:
1. Comparing funeral home costs
2. Preplanning a funeral
3. An obituary facilitator
4. Financial data of the deceased for survivors
5. Form to advise future generations on any health problems.
This book will start you off on your journey to assist your family in completing and concluding the final chapter of a loved one with dignity and grace.
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