So long as you use a licensed and reputable crematory or Cremation Service, you can assume that the ashes or cremains placed in your urn are indeed your loved one. However, many of us have asked ourselves the question “Is he or she REALLY in there? How would I really know? Did the crematory make a mistake?”
At Cremation Society of America, you receive our Cremation Integrity Promise that our specially-trained team strictly follows our established protocols for ensuring that your loved one is positively identified throughout the cremation process.
Our industry-leading chain-of-custody procedures include the following:
Step 1: Before your loved one is removed from the place of death, a sealed identification band is placed on your loved one’s ankle. The placement of the band is certified and witnessed. Your loved one is then transported to our location in a solemn and dignified fashion.
Step 2: Upon arrival at our location, the information on the identification band is confirmed a second time to be true and correct. A second identification band is then created with a barcode and placed on the wrist of your loved one. The barcode is then scanned and your loved one’s identification is entered into our system for validation and tracking. This ensures that we know the name of your loved one and your loved one’s precise location anywhere within our facility.
Step 3: Once the designated family members make positive identification of your loved one by viewing or providing a photo ID, your loved one is then moved to the crematory.
Step 4: Upon arriving at the crematory, identification and verification is confirmed once again and witnessed. Your loved one is then placed in the cremation chamber. An indestructible identification disk is placed in the chamber with your loved one. The disk is approximately the size of a quarter and is made of stainless steel. It will not melt despite the intense heat of the chamber. Unique identification numbers are stamped onto the disk for future verification. The disk will remain with the ashes (cremains) and we will keep a record of the unique identification numbers indefinitely. You are welcome to review the identification numbers upon request.
Step 5: Once the cremation process is complete, the cremains – including the disk – are then placed into the container or urn selected by the family. The disk remains in the run with the cremains to provide an ironclad method of ensuring that your loved one’s ashes are indeed inside the urn.
Please Contact CSA for more information regarding our Direct Cremation services and our industry-leading identification protocols to provide you with peace of mind. CSA can also help you pre-plan all of your Direct Cremation services to meet your needs. We look forward to being of service to you and your family.
Now that the Summer is just around the corner, many families focus their attention on the end of the school year and the inevitable summer travel plans. We at Cremation Society of America believe that your travel plans should include Travel Protection.
What if a Loved One passes away while traveling to visit family or to tour cities overseas? Direct Cremation”, sometimes called “Simple Cremation,” is a process whereby cremation is performed soon after death, without a viewing, visitation or funeral service of any kind.
What if you’ve arranged for your Direct Cremation and you’re planning a trip across the United States to visit family for several weeks? What happens if you or a loved one passes away unexpectedly in another state that is thousands of miles away from home? How do you ensure that your loved one is returned home in a dignified manner? How much will such arrangements cost?
You’ll have to deal with the rules and regulations of the airlines when it comes to the transportation of your loved one’s remains – and the cost as well. You’ll also have to arrange for the cremains to be transported to your pre-planned facility for cremation. And you’ll need to manage these issues during a time of sudden and likely overwhelming grief.
A Travel Protection Plan can save time, stress, and cost for you or your next-of-kin should your death occur while traveling away from your legal residence. Most Travel Protection Plans will include many of the following services:
Most Travel Protection Plans are triggered when the death occurs a certain number of miles away from the person’s legal residence. Be sure to review your Travel Protection Plan carefully for specific terms and conditions.
At a time of shock and grief, you or your loved ones would make just one phone call to activate the Plan. Once activated, the Plan agents immediately commence arrangements to provide you and your loved ones with peace of mind amidst the chaos of returning home from your journey.
Your loved one’s Direct Cremation is now complete, and you have just received a rectangular cardboard box from us at Cremation Society of America. You notice that the cardboard box is a bit heavier than you imagined. A lifetime of emotions seems to wash over you simultaneously as you open the box to discover your loved one’s cremains are a granular texture, much like sand. So much as happened to get to this point: The phone calls to family and friends, legal and estate issues to be addressed, just to name a few. You take a deep breath to reflect for a moment. The inevitable question you ask yourself is, “OK. Now what do I do?”
Figuring out what to do with a loved one’s cremated remains can be a difficult and, at times, overwhelming decision in light of the grief and chaos that follows the loss of a loved one.
We at CSA are here to provide you with several options and ideas to honor your loved one:
The option that likely first comes to mind also happens to be the most popular ways to handle cremains: scatter the cremains in a place that holds significance and meaning for your deceased loved one. When it comes to scattering cremains, you must be cognizant of the specific laws and regulations that each state and even each county may have in place to govern the scattering of ashes. Once you determine the location to scatter the cremains, be sure to contact the applicable governmental authority to ensure that you secure all appropriate permits and permissions.
For example, the State of Florida has no specific state laws in effect to govern the scattering of ashes, but counties and cities may have guidelines and require certain permits or licenses.
Another traditional option is Scattering at Sea, whereby your loved one’s cremains are scattered across the surface of the sea in a ceremony that can be quite peaceful and serene. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) governs the scattering of ashes at sea and does not permit:
Another option that is gaining in popularity is scattering ashes in U.S. National Parks. The U.S. National Park Service allows for the scattering of cremains within its national parks but each park maintains its own policies and procedures. Here are a few examples:
Even though scattering is the most popular option for treating cremains, there are a nearly limitless number of other ways to treat cremains. Your loved one’s cremains can be placed in a container/vessel such as an urn, incorporated into jewelry; placed in a columbarium or transformed into something else like an ornament or even a tattoo.
For a very long time, families have chosen to keep their loved one’s cremains present in their everyday lives within a container or vessel. Here are some examples:
Cremains can also be buried in a cemetery in the same way that deceased are buried in caskets. This process is called “interment.” Here are a few of the more common burial options:
There are also many unconventional and innovative options for treating cremains – and more options are being created every day. Here are just a few of the more creative ways to honor your loved one:
Once you decide how best to honor your loved one, you may need to travel to another part of the country to meet with family and friends. Many airlines allow cremains to be brought on board as carry-on or checked baggage, but the urn/container holding the remains must pass through the x-ray machine or it will not be allowed through security. In order to transport cremains on a flight, you must present a death or cremation certificate in order to carry them on board.
Cremains can also be air-shipped as cargo but only by known shippers (a “known shipper” is designated as such after passing inspection and qualification rules set by the US Transport Security Agency [TSA]).
Contact us at Cremation Society of America to order a Direct Cremation and speak to us regarding the options available to you once your receive your loved one’s cremains.