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News and Blogs

Cremation now preferred over burial in Minnesota

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Pioneer Press
Minneapolis - St. Paul MN
July 7, 2012

When it comes to deciding what to do with a dead body, most Minnesotans are now thinking outside of the box.

After decades of slow but steady growth, the number of cremations in the state is now exceeding the number of burials, and experts expect the growth to continue in the years to come.

The shift from burial to burning has forced changes on the funeral industry and the cemetery business. It's transforming the way Minnesotans mourn the dead. And it has paved the way for a new form of body disposition about to hit the market at a Twin Cities funeral home next week: flameless cremation, or more precisely, disposing of the dead by dissolving the flesh in an alkaline solution.

Read the full article in the Pioneer Press

Last Updated ( Tuesday, 10 July 2012 10:17 )

Drilling for Gas Under Cemeteries Raises Concerns

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The New York Times
Published: July 8, 2012

FORT WORTH — Henry Donald Young Sr. is buried in a small pioneer cemetery next to his parents here, beneath the drooping leaves of an old tree at the industrial edge of one of the largest cities in Texas.

But Mr. Young’s relatives wonder how restful his final resting place has become. Thousands of feet beneath the cemetery, a company has been drilling for natural gas using the controversial technique known as hydraulic fracturing, or fracking.

“I would imagine that drilling and fracking and all that vibration is bound to cause some damage,” Mr. Young’s son, Don, said of the 134-year-old Handley Cemetery. “But who’s going to dig up their dead relatives to see if there’s a crack in the casket? What’s being done to Fort Worth in general, whether it’s to the living or the dead, it’s immoral.”

Read the full article at The New York Times


Cemeteries: the insurance void

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Death Care Law Blog
July 8, 2012

For obvious reasons, life insurance is the preneed funding choice for many funeral directors. One hundred percent trusting laws give proactive preneed organizations no choice but to use insurance funding. Insurance provides the commissions needed to finance marketing and a sales force, and, maybe as important, relieves the funeral home from preneed accounting and administration. But insurance funding is predicated on the contract being performed at death. In contrast to funeral homes, cemeteries can (and must) deliver preneed sales in advance of death.

Read the full article at Death Care Law Blog


$500 a minute

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Get out a Phillips head screwdriver. Now unscrew a couple of hooks holding up pictures in your living room. Now put them back. That probably took you less than two minutes. How much would you pay someone to do it for you? 

Sacramento Memorial Lawn (say it with me: "Which lawn are your parents buried in?") thinks it deserves $500 a minute to do the same job. It's extra-sensitive work, see, because they're taking the faceplate off a columbarium niche to retrieve your (cue organ music in a grim minor key) loved one's remains. 

Watch this report from the local CBS affiliate. .  .some guy on the cemetery staff actually shows it takes less than two minutes by demonstrating it! The woman featured in the story wanted to take her father's ashes back to a family burial spot on her own property and couldn't believe it when the cemetery lawn wanted $1,026. 


Bonus!---Now you never have to ask a Memorial Lawn to help again, because you're a DIY Memorialitarian!

Last Updated ( Friday, 24 August 2012 14:57 )

Tumultuous Funerals

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Mortuary Management
July 3, 2012

“When the Deceased Can’t Rest in Peace…”

For most persons, funerals are meant to be a time of solemn reflection, a dignified celebration of a deceased’s life. All too often, however, the decorum and sanctity of these ceremonies are irreparably marred by hostile confrontations, disruptive behaviors or even disorderly altercations erupting amongst family members, friends and those who have ostensibly gathered to pay their last respects.

While these situations are relatively infrequent in comparison to the millions of funerals held each year without incident, the consequences and liabilities associated with what may be considered “tumultuous funerals” can neither be ignored nor denied. Albeit unfortunate, funeral directors can no longer assume that the historical sanctity of viewings, funerals or burials will be respected or perpetuated to the degree they once enjoyed. This observation may be further validated by a growing trend for secular, contemporary and even theme services that many times celebrate the “lifestyle” and not the life, of the deceased. A funeral director’s failure to identify or act upon these or other “foreseeable” risks is all that may be required to allow the unthinkable to occur with unspeakable results.

Read the full article at Mortuary Management

Thanks to the DeathCare Discussion List for alerting us to this article.


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