Funeral Options

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There are more choices today than in the past – choices of what is done with the person’s body and choices for the type of services.


Let’s start with the latter first. Funeral homes typically use the word “disposition” to mean what is done with the person’s body. It includes these most common choices:

  • burial in the ground
  • placement in a mausoleum
  • cremation – which gives further choices of what to do with the ashes

                - burial in the ground

                - placement in a mausoleum, columbarium or scattering garden

                - scattering in a personally meaningful place

                - keeping them at home

  • donating your body to science, otherwise known as an anatomical gift to a local medical school


Choices with types of services are varied. This list starts with the traditional ones: 

  • visiting hours, a service the next day at a church or funeral home, then burial or cremation
  • the above except with the visiting time the same day as the service for an hour or two immediately before it, with burial or cremation after
  • burial first – burial can take place first with just the family at the cemetery and then a service immediately after
  • cremation first – after a few days, the ashes will be available to be present for a visiting time and service either on the same day or visiting hours one day with the service the following day. In some cases, people may with to have the services without the ashes present.


Please note that the above services are not applicable when the body is donated to a medical school. The body must be taken to the medical school immediately after the death occurs. For more information about this, go to the page titled “Anatomical Gift.”