When you first begin the process of designing a funeral, the decisions you'll face might seem overwhelming.
If the funeral was not pre-planned, you may have questions about where to start. We've put together some of the important information you'll need to make the initial decisions, reach out to the appropriate people, and begin the process of putting together your loved one's final farewell. Remember that as soon as you begin to cope with your loss, it's often a good idea to enlist the help and support of a trusted friend in making the necessary arrangements.
If you have any questions about your next steps, the options available to you, or what the funeral process will entail, we'd be honored to walk you through this information in more detail and answer your questions. Don't hesitate to contact us for anything you might need. We are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at (808) 538-3877.
Your initial call with our funeral director will allow us to inquire about any prearrangements and gather the information we need to transport your loved one to the mortuary, but you can take this time to ask any questions you may have and resolve any concerns. At later meetings, you'll be able to discuss your arrangements in greater detail, but we're always available in your time of need to provide emotional support, a sympathetic ear, and careful guidance.
Know that during your time of loss, your greatest resource will be loved ones who want to offer their assistance in any way they can. We encourage you to get in touch with relatives, neighbors, friends, clergy members or other spiritual advisors, and other trusted members of your community. The are often more than happy to prepare food, look after children, help with arrangements, or simply offer a kind word and open arms.
FIRST COUPLE HOURS
When a death occurs at home or in the workplace, you'll need to contact emergency personnel or your loved one's physician if he or she was under medical care. If no one else was present when the death occured, you'll also need to notify the police before the deceased is moved to a secondary location.
When death occurs while your loved one is in a hospital, care facility, or hospice program, the professional staff will notify you and contact the appropriate authorities. If you've already given them the name of a funeral home, the facility will notify them as well.
The next steps involve registration of the death and the processes and documentation involved depending on the circumstances. The professionals you've contacted will help to guide you through obtaining a medical certificate and the appropriate registration procedures.
If you're ever unsure of whom you should notify or what your next steps should be, please call us for assistance in determining the appropriate course of action for your particular situation.
First Couple days
After you've taken care of the initial necessary arrangements, you'll want to notify friends and relatives of the death. If it is too painful for you to do this yourself, it's absolutely okay for a trusted friend to make the calls in your place. Now is the time to review any prearranged wishes or plans your loved one may have put into place, and meet with the professionals at your chosen funeral home to discuss your options and begin designing a funeral. You'll also write a death notice to notify those in your community of your loved one's passing.
Don't hesitate to contact us with any questions you might have about what you need to do, even if your concerns aren't directly related to the funeral. We're well-versed in all topics relating the the loss of a loved one, and we're honored to provide you with answers, advice, and guidance in your time of need.
Other questions you may have
If your loved one has not yet specified any arrangements or preferences beforehand, there are some initial questions you will likely need to answer when you consult with your funeral home:
- Should I choose to embalm?
- Do I need to purchase a casket?
- Will I care for my loved one's physical remains through burial or cremation?
- What sort of funeral or memorial service should I plan?
- Are there any religious traditions or customs I need to plan for?
- Should I engage the services of a clergy member or spiritual leader?
These questions are just a starting point, and you don't need to know the answers right away. Start thinking about your decisions, and contact us to gain a better understanding of your options and discuss what might be the most appropriate solution for your situation. We're here to make the process easier for you, and we can start by making sure that you have all the right information and guidance you'll need.
Meeting with The Funeral Director
When you meet with a member of our staff to discuss your arrangements, we'll first provide you with a general price list to give you a basic idea of our service costs. We'll then walk you through the entire arrangement process and ask you about your loved one to gain a better understanding of the person the service will honor. Use this time to communicate your ideas and preferences, share your loved one's story, revisit memories, and highlight their accomplishments. Our professionals will use this information to guide you in the creation of a personalized, meaningful celebration of your loved one's unique journey. Your meeting might include:
- Preparing and filing the death certificate
- Scheduling the services and events (including the location, date and time)
- Selecting the casket, urn, or other products you may need
- Drafting an obituary
- Arranging the necessary transportation
- Selecting pallbearers
To help express your loved one's personality and life story, feel free to bring any memorabilia like photos, videos, music, crafts, or treasured items that might give us a better understanding of how you envision paying tribute to your loved one. Even if you're not sure how a particular aspect of their life might be incorporated, don't hesitate to ask; we can often make unique suggestions on a way to add that element as a special touch to their service.
Information You'll Need
We'd like to make this process as smooth and stress-free for you as possible, and you can come prepared for your meeting by making sure that you have the following information about your loved one on hand when you meet with your professionals to discuss your arrangements:
- Full legal name and home address
- Social Security number
- Date and place of birth
- Father's name and mother's maiden name
- Veterans discharge papers (DD-214), if applicable
- Highest education
- Chosen place of burial, if applicable
- Clergy name and phone number, if applicable
- Names and relationships of survivors
- Insurance policy information, if applicable
- Recent photograph
- Clothing you'd like us to use when dressing them for the service