Nobody likes to think about what to do with a loved one’s body when their life ends. Unfortunately, it’s a reality that every family must face when a death occurs. Final disposition is term used to describe the options. It is usually regulated by the state in which the death occurs or the area where final disposition will be facilitated.
The concept of Burial is a socially historic method of final disposition. Cemeteries are dedicated areas where the burial of loved ones can occur. Burial is usually facilitated by utilizing either: Rigid Containment or a Temporary/Non-Containment method. Cemeteries usually self-regulate the type of containment required or if containment is necessary or not. Services traditionally occur prior to burial but they can also occur after the burial.
- Rigid Containment - Human remains are traditionally place into a casket; a casket is placed into an outer burial container or vault; and then the combination is interred into the ground. Human Cremated Remains can also be contained in an urn or urn vault and interred into the ground.
- Green Burial - Green burial may be considered a type of Non-Contained burial. Customarily, green burial usually prohibits the use of traditional embalming (some cemeteries do allow ecofriendly methods of temporary stasis). Human remains may be dressed and placed in a shroud, a biodegradable alternative container, or simple wood casket prior to being interred into the ground. Human Cremated Remains may be interred or poured directly into the burial site (dependent on cemetery regulations).
Human remains are reduced to bone, and the remaining bone is fragmented. Cremation can be facilitated with fire and heat or by utilizing lightly alkaline water. A Celebration of life and Viewing may occur prior to the cremation or a memorial celebration may occur after the cremation.
- Cremation by fire - Human Remains are placed in a chamber and exposed to fire and extreme heat. The remaining bone are then fragmented.
- Cremation by Water - Human Remains are placed in a chamber and are exposed to a combination of water, potassium or sodium hydroxide, and a little heat (this process is also known as Alkaline Hydrolysis). Alkaline Hydrolysis may be a more ecofriendly process when comparing the two cremation methods. This method produces no direct water contaminates, zero carbon emissions, and utilizes less energy. (This method is not yet legal in the state of Wisconsin)
- Burial - Cremated Remains are commonly buried in dedicated cemeteries.
- Scattering - Cremated Remains are sometime scattered, sprinkled, poured, or released in a meaningful location. Although scattering is commonly utilized, municipal, state, or federal laws may not condone this practice within certain areas. In addition, environmental inquiries are beginning to surface, questioning the potential environmental effect of the increasing popularity of scattering within certain natural areas and water ways.
Prior to death, an advance directive can be initiated to bequest your dead human body to a state university for study or dissection. At the time of death our funeral home will coordinate with the university of choice. When the study is complete, your human remains are typically cremated and can be returned to family members. A Celebration of life and Viewing may occur prior to the donation or a memorial celebration may occur after.