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Cremation Funerals: What is a Cremation Funeral?

When making arrangements for a funeral, an alternative to burial that’s becoming an increasingly popular option is cremation. Cremation is the process of incinerating the remains of the deceased in which the body is placed into a specially designed device or furnace that has immense heat, and leaves about 2,200 degrees to reduce the body to ashes and bone fragments in a few short hours.

The process uses smoke and gases within the furnace that are circulated to avoid them being released into the air. The bone ash is then collected into a special area in the lower regions of the furnace. The ashes are then moved into an urn container that is provided to the family or loved ones or disposed of in a designated method that can include spreading the ashes on a garden, at sea, or at a burial location.

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What to do with the Cremains?

The ashes of the deceased are called cremains. Some individuals will request the contents and urn so they can have the deceased in their home. Some prefer to have the ashes buried in a cemetery with a standard headstone while others will have a service to spread the ashes in various areas within the laws of the state or local regions.

In addition to the above types of disposal of the ashes, some people will have a tree planted in the memory of the deceased where the ashes were spread. Since there are restrictions in some areas of the country about spreading ashes, it is recommended to inquire from the funeral director prior to disposing of the ashes.

Cremation Urns

The cremations urns that store the ashes are constructed out of metals, woods, pewter, ceramic, and marble. The prices for the urns vary from $100 to $1,000. The lesser of the urns are used for burial urns. The cost of cremation ranges from $500 to $1,000 depending on the areas of the country. Due to the lower cost of cremation, the options for using this type to dispose of the deceased is used increasingly while some believe in the saying of "ashes to ashes, dust to dust" for the purpose of disposal.

Why Choose to Cremate?

A cremation funeral is widely selected due to the speed of disposal of the body and more flexible funeral dates. It is common for the memorial services to be held as long as a month after the cremation as well as in a different state of the cremation or burial.

UPS or the US Postal service can legally ship transportation of the cremains. The requirements for the shipping include a certificate of cremations, the ashes, and the potential new location of the burial.

The Cremation Process

The process of cremation funeral is a detail and orchestrated process. There are phases that are strictly followed beginning with the death of the individual. Upon the death, a representative of the funeral home or crematorium will transport the body. This phase is only performed after a death certificate is issued and all legal documents are filled out properly. This process can take up to 48 hours in some areas and is referred to as the "waiting period". During the waiting period, the body will be enclosed in temperature-controlled refrigeration until it is ready for transportation.

If the family of the deceased has planned any type of service that requires viewing of the body, the deceased will be prepared for the service or it will be prepared for the cremation process. The body will be cremated according to the schedule of the funeral home or crematorium.

After the body has been cremated, the remains are removed and placed in the location to remove any foreign object such as metal form bridgework or joint replacement surgeries. The remaining ashes will be processed into a grinder to create a consistent shape and size that will fit easily into an urn. This process grinds the larger fragments into smaller finer pieces.

Once the cremains are into an ash form, they are placed into an urn or container. If a permanent container has not been selected, the remains will be placed into a temporary metal, plastic, or cardboard container. At this point, the ashes are ready for disposal to the family or funeral home for the desired burial depending on the funeral arrangements. The disposal is a personal preference.

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