Cremation is simply an alternative method of disposition to burial. It is possible to have a traditional service, with a visitation or viewing, then service, and instead of going to a cemetery, cremate. The cremated remains can then be interred, scattered, kept at home, or several other options.
Direct cremation refers to a cremation without a visitation/viewing or service prior to cremation. The family will need to decide on arrangements, identify their loved one, all next of kin will need to sign the authorization to cremate, and then cremation can take place. Once cremated, the family can have a memorial service at the funeral home, a church, or in a private setting. Direct cremation is not necessarily any less expensive than an immediate burial, it is just the family’s preference of disposition. There are so many beneficial options with cremated remains these days. Once cremated, families can wait a period of time for services- for nicer weather, for children to be out of school, to coincide with a family reunion so everyone is in town, etc.
There are also endless possibilities of what to do with the cremated remains. An urn can be a container that is purchased specifically to house the cremains, one can be provided from among the loved ones’ belongings, cremains can be turned into gems, put into jewelry to be worn, they can be part of an underwater reef, set afloat in a body of water, shot into space- even inserted into ink for an eternal tattoo! As traditions change, and technology increases, memorials have become very customizable.
We have used the same reputable crematory in Alexandria, VA for over 30 years. Once your loved one is identified by a family member or friend, he or she is given a tag with their vital information on their body. That information is then copied verbatim onto the container that their body will be transported to the crematory in. After the single cremation, the ashes are then tagged with a cremation number, and a matching certificate is printed by the crematory. Upon return to the funeral home, the cremated remains are then labeled again with their vital information and the cremation tag from the crematory, ensuring a smooth and consistent process.
For more cremation ideas, please see the links below: