Death Away from Home
When a death happens away from home, it adds additional stress to already emotional circumstances. It can be difficult to know what to do next. Rest assured, your funeral director can guide you through the process.
If you are notified of a death that occurred out of the state or country, be sure to contact your local funeral home immediately and coordinate care and transport through them. Calling an establishment at the location of death first and then involving your local funeral home may result in added fees and costs.
A variety of circumstances, including a death away from home or a need to move remains from one place to another, can require someone to transport either casketed or cremated remains across the country or the world. Your funeral director can assist you in ensuring your loved ones remains are transported with care and on time to the location where services and final disposition will occur..
Organ and Tissue Donation
Even in death, your loved one can
help others live through the gift of organ and tissue donation. The need is great. Nationally, more than 118,000 people are
on the list for an organ transplant, and approximately 20 people die every day
waiting. The possible impact is enormous. One organ donor can save the
lives of up to eight people and one tissue donor can impact the lives of 50 or
Funeral home directors work closely with the nation’s organ
procurement organizations (OPOs) to carry out this lifesaving mission. Here are
facts to address families’ most commonly asked questions about organ and tissue
- When a loved one dies, the hospital or healthcare facility
will report the death to an OPO which determines if he or she is eligible for
organ and tissue donation. If determined eligible, the OPO will contact your
family to discuss the options.
- If your loved one has not already registered as a donor,
the OPO will ask if you would like to consider donation.
- Your loved one can still be embalmed after donation and,
in most cases, donation does not interfere with an open-casket viewing.
- All major religions support organ and tissue
donation. Protestant, Catholic, and Jewish faiths view it as an act of human benevolence
in line with religious doctrine. Hinduism, Buddhism and Islam believe that
donation is a matter of individual conscience.
- The OPO cares for your loved one with the utmost respect
during the organ and tissue recovery process. While the recovery is taking
place, your funeral director will work with you to finalize arrangements for
when your loved one is released to the funeral home.
- Due to the surgical nature of the procedure, organ and
tissue recovery can cause a delay in your loved one being released to the
funeral home. Most families find that this short delay is outweighed by the
peace they realize knowing that their loved one saved the lives of others.
For more information, visit Donate Life America at
Legacy of Life
You now have the option to honor your loved one’s decision
to be an organ and tissue donor by including the Donate Life logo in his or her
obituary. To learn more, please speak with your local funeral home director.
Over time, many of us tend to accumulate “replacement parts”
such as new hips, knees, pins, and dental work. Since these materials withstand
the high heat of cremation, they survive the cremation process. As they are
bulky, metal, and not able to be processed into unidentifiable remains,
historically these metal implants have been buried in cemeteries, or discarded
as medical waste.
Many families many not be aware that with advances in
technology, much of the valuable materials and metals remaining after cremation
can be recovered. These “manmade” materials are separated from a loved one’s
remains, so that only the cremated remains are returned to authorized
survivors, and the residual metals from implants are then able to be recycled
in an environmentally sound manner.
If cremation is chosen, your funeral director will ask if there
are any implanted medical devices, such as a pacemaker, prior to cremation
occurring. The reason for this is normal pacemakers contain batteries, which
explode when exposed to very high temperatures. For safety, pacemakers are
explanted (removed) prior to the cremation.