Our Direct Cremation Services
When it comes to the rise in cremation, you’ll get no argument from us: today, more and more families are choosing direct cremation instead of traditional casketed burial. And in this time of third-party, low-cost cremation providers and cremation societies formed to reduce the cost of cremation; the number of people choosing direct cremation services is also on the rise.
What is A Direct Cremation Service?
Think of it as “expedited” cremation, where the deceased is taken from the location where the body is being held (home, hospital, nursing home, or coroner’s office) directly to the crematory. Direct cremation basically includes transportation, completion of all necessary paperwork, the cremation process itself, and the safekeeping of the “ashes” prior to their return to the family. It’s at that point that our involvement is done.
Let’s Go Beyond the “What Is” Question
We want you to know something: because we listen very closely to the stories families have to share about a direct cremation decision they’ve made in the past, we’ve come to realize ultimately there can be a higher cost to those left behind. Often there’s a lingering regret they feel because of making the decision (which, at the time, felt like the right one).
Consider this scenario: A family comes to us, exhausted after enduring months (or even years) of on-going medical care for a terminally-ill family member. Now, all they want is release; a time to heal from the traumatic months of watching and waiting. Here’s what one woman had to say:
“My ex-husband was diagnosed with colon cancer in 2012. He died after almost three years of companioning him through surgeries and chemotherapy; everyone involved–our sons, his father, and I–was exhausted.
At the time it made “sense” to choose direct cremation: we were all “done in” by what we had been through. But months later, I knew in my heart we had not done the right thing. Because we had chosen not to have a remembrance service; in a sense, his life passed from this life “without a ripple”. His gifts, his legacy were unacknowledged.
And since I was only his ex-wife, my opinions mattered very little to his blood relatives, all of whom wanted things exactly as they were. Now they could move on with their lives unhindered. It seems I’m the only one who feels the way I do.”
Everyone involved sincerely believed direct cremation was the right cremation option for their situation; and confidently moved forward with that decision. We respected their choice, and once the cremation process was complete, a designated family member picked up the cremated remains and, “that was that”, as they say.
Because the family chose direct cremation services, where there was no funeral or memorial service to honor the life of the deceased; one or more family members sensed, deep down, they neglected what was really important: the public acknowledgement not only of their loss, but of the value of the life forever lost to them. In not having a service, they denied themselves the comfort of community, at a time they needed it most. Instead, their grief is hidden; unseen; as is the sorrow felt by others. Everyone is grieving in isolation, which can prolong the suffering.
Of course, this isn’t always the case; depending on the situation, direct cremation services can be a viable and affordable cremation option.
Here at Vander Plaat-Vermeulen Memorial Home, our affordable direct cremation services package includes:
the arrangement conference
services of a licensed funeral director and support staff
basic care of the body for identification by a family representative
obtaining the death certificate
assisting with the newspaper obituary
assisting with social security, veterans’ benefits and insurance claims if necessary
provide all local transportation for the transfer of the physical remains from the place of death to the crematory
the cremation process
the alternative cremation container
safekeeping of cremated remains until received by a designated family member
If you believe that one of our direct cremations is right for your situation, we encourage you to read our page on why to choose cremation to learn more about what’s involved in making this decision. Anyone unfamiliar with cremation will appreciate the facts within our webpage, What is Cremation? You may also find our discussion of cremation costs to be of value.
Or, you can simplify things by calling us at 201-891-4770; we’ll take all the time you need to explore the subject of direct cremations and review other cremation options, including cremation funeral services and cremation memorial services.
Plan a Cremation Memorial Service