Your questions answered
There are many questions to be answered in regards to a funeral. Here are some questions Keyser’s funeral directors commonly answer to give you insight on the funeral and cremation process.
Funeral Frequently Asked Questions
What is a funeral?
What type of service should I have?
Can I personalize a funeral?
Do we need to have an obituary notice and what is included in one?
Who are funeral directors and what do they do?
What happens if the death occurs in the middle of the night or on the weekend?
What if a death occurs away from my home town?
What is embalming and what purpose does it serve?
Do I need to have an embalming?
How much does a funeral cost?
Why are funerals so expensive?
What do I do if I am not satisfied with the way a funeral was handled?
Cremation Frequently Asked Questions
How long is cremation process?
The cremation process depends on the size of the individual and the container used; approximately 3 to 5 hours.
What is the temperature of the cremation chamber?
The temperature reaches between 1100 to 1800 degrees Fahrenheit.
Is a casket required for cremation?
No. An alternative enclosed, rigid container constructed of wood or cardboard is required, which is cremated with the body. It needs to meet standards of safety, respect and dignity. In some states, no container is required.
How can I be sure I receive the correct remains?
All reputable cremation providers have developed rigorous sets of operating policies and procedures in order to maximize the level of service and minimize the potential for human error. Since it is illegal to perform more than one cremation at a time, and the vast majority of crematories can only cremate one body at a time, it is next to impossible to receive the incorrect remains.
What do I do with the cremated remains?
You may choose to keep the cremated remains in your possession, scatter them where allowed, or bury them in a cemetery or place in a mausoleum. You can keep a portion of the remains as a remembrance in a small urn or in a keepsake.
An urn is not required by law. However, an urn may be desired if there is to be a memorial service or if the remains are to be interred in a cemetery. If an urn is not purchased or provided by the family, the cremated remains will be returned in a temporary plastic container.
How much do cremated remains weigh?
Usually 4 to 5 pounds not including the urn.
Are all the cremated remains returned?
With the exception of minute and microscopic particles, which are impossible to remove from the cremation chamber and processing machine, all of the cremated remains are given back to the family.
What size of Cremation Urn is necessary for cremated remains?
The size of an adult Cremation Urn we recommend is 200 cubic inches or approximately the size of a one gallon paint can.
Do all religions allow cremation?
Cremation is accepted by many religions. If you are uncertain whether cremation is favorable within a specific religion, contact us for help. It is encouraged that cremated remains be a part of a funeral as it provides a focal point for the service.
Can I plan my cremation in advance?
Yes. Planning ahead the details and payment of your cremation can be done with our help, at your convenience.
Burial Frequently Asked Questions
What is opening and closing and why is it so expensive?
Opening and closing fees can include up to and beyond 50 separate services provided by the cemetery. Typically, the opening and closing fee include administration and permanent record keeping (determining ownership, obtaining permission and the completion of other documentation which may be required, entering the interment particulars in the interment register, maintaining all legal files); opening and closing the grave (locating the grave and laying out the boundaries, excavating and filling the interment space); installation and removal of the lowering device; placement and removal of artificial grass dressing and coco-matting at the grave site, leveling, tamping, re-grading and sodding the grave site and leveling and re-sodding the grave if the earth settles.
Can we dig our own grave to avoid the charge for opening and closing?
The actual opening and closing of the grave is just one component of the opening and closing fee. Due to safety issues which arise around the use of machinery on cemetery property and the protection of other gravesites, the actual opening and closing of the grave is conducted by cemetery grounds personnel only.
Why is having a place to visit so important?
To remember and to be remembered are natural human needs. A permanent memorial in a cemetery provides a focal point for remembrance and memorializing the deceased. Throughout human history, memorialization of the dead has been a key component of almost every culture. Psychologists say that remembrance practices, from the funeral or memorial service to permanent memorialization, serve an important emotional function for survivors by helping them bring closure and allowing the healing process to begin. Providing a permanent resting place for the deceased is a dignified treatment for a loved one’s mortal remains, which fulfills the natural human desire for memorialization.
What happens when a cemetery runs out of land?
When a cemetery runs out of land, it will continue to operate and serve the community. Most cemeteries have crematoriums, and some historic cemeteries even offer guided tours.
In a hundred years will this cemetery still be there?
We think of cemetery lands as being in perpetuity. There are cemeteries throughout the world that have been in existence for hundreds of years.
How soon after or how long after a death must an individual be buried?
There is no law that states a specific time from for burial. Considerations that will affect timeline include the need to secure all permits and authorizations, notification of family and friends, preparation of cemetery site and religious considerations. Public heath laws may have limitations on the maximum length of time allowed to pass prior to final disposition. Contact your local funeral provider for more details.
Does a body have to be embalmed before it is buried?
No. Embalming is a choice which depends on factors like if there is to be an open casket viewing of the body or if there is to be an extended time between death and internment. Public health laws may require embalming if the body is going to be transported by air or rail.
What options are available besides ground burial?
Besides ground burial, some cemeteries offer interment in lawn crypts or entombment in mausoleums. In addition, most cemeteries provide choices for those who have selected cremation. These often include placement of cremated remains in a niche of a columbarium or interment in an urn space.
What are burial vaults and grave liners?
These are the outside containers into which the casket is placed. Burial vaults are designed to protect the casket and may be made of a variety or combination of materials including concrete, stainless steel, galvanized steel, copper, bronze, plastic or fiberglass. A grave liner is a lightweight version of a vault which simply keeps the grave surface from sinking in.
Must I purchase a burial vault?
Most large, active cemeteries have regulations that require the use of a basic grave liner for maintenance and safety purposes. Either a grave liner or a burial vault will satisfy these requirements. Some smaller rural or churchyard cemeteries do not require use of a container to surround the casket in the grave.