Some funerals are just the typical “old fashioned” service – nothing fancy. Many times families are not offered different options or ways of making a service memorable or the funeral home just does not want to change the way they typically handle services. Sometimes during the service we are attending we don’t hear personal stories about who we are there to respect.
Since entering the funeral service industry, I have always tried different things or ways of doing services to make the death, grief, and funeral process better for families. I have worked in several different funeral homes throughout my career and it was difficult at times to introduce different options for a family because the firm was so comfortable doing the same type of service that they were afraid of CHANGE. The “Good Ole’ Fashion” way of doing things was what they were comfortable with and when I added something different it was frowned upon even if the family appreciated it.
At VanArsdale Funeral Services, we have made it a goal as funeral directors to try to make each and every service a personal service to be as memorable as the person we are there to pay respects to. For us, it about listening to the family and offer suggestions and options for them to decide if it is right for their family.
Some families don’t know what they want but they do know what they don’t want. It is up to the funeral director to help the family to get the service they want with the right options and experience for that loved one.
Over the years we have done many things or gave families options to make a service service one of a kind. Below are some examples of options we have to provided to make a loved one’s service and the family experience with the funeral one of a kind:
It could be burning a families cow brand into a of a Barnwood casket,
It is about what makes all the family and friends feel as they are part of the service for there loved one or friend. It is just the little things the funeral home and funeral director can do that does not cost you any more money but memories. Children sometimes are the most willing participates to help and usually is the ones that make the most memories. Little things to help them remember and give them a sense of purpose during the service of their loved one. Examples: give them a piece of paper and let them draw a picture or write a letter and have them place it in casket or have them watch you place letter. You can have them help with casket with being a casketbearer or escort the casket.
As a funeral director the most important thing is to listen to the family and find out the things that brought their loved one and them the best memories. To make a meaningful and rememberable service, is to share stories, hobbies, and anything they loved to do with the funeral director and hopefully they can give you their experience of what they can do that is right for all the family and friends.