Monthly Archives: December 2018

cremations in Stroudsburg, PA

Cremation History

As cremations in Stroudsburg, PA and beyond become more and more popular, many people wonder where it all began.   

Historians believe that humans started burning their dead as early as 3000 B.C, meaning cremation began a long time ago. Archeologists have discovered pottery shards and urns that dictate that cremation started spreading across northern Europe, Spain, Portugal and the British Isles during the Bronze Age, from 2500 to 1000 B.C. It wasn’t until Homer’s time, around 800 B.C, that cremation became the most common disposition method. This rise in cremation is most likely due to the prevalence of war and disease-related deaths.    

By 395 A.D, when the Roman Empire was at its peak, cremation was widely practiced, and people stored the ashes in elaborate urns like we do today. However, the early Christians disapproved of cremation because of their traditional Jewish practices. Therefore, when Constantine made Christianity the official Roman religion in 400 A.D, the cremation almost disappeared in favor of traditional burial.   

Cremation as we know it didn’t pop up again until1873 when an Italian professor displayed his new cremation chamber model at the Vienna Exposition. His new invention jump-started the cremation revolution on both sides of the Atlantic, and the the first modern cremation chamber in the United States was built in Washington, Pennsylvania in 1876 by Dr. Julius LeMoyne, with the second not far behind in Lancaster, PA in 1884. Soon, crematories were being built all across the US, and by the year 1900 there were 20 in operation.   

The practice took off even more when, in 1913, Dr. Hugo Erichsen started the Cremation Association of America as way to spread to word about this modern way of safely and hygienically disposing of bodies. The foundation was originally made up of doctors with concerns about the spread of diseases from whole-body burials to living humans. This belief and the foundation continued to foster cremation popularity until the 1920s when it was proven that whole body burials, when done properly, were just as safe for the public’s health as cremations.   

After that discovery, the Cremation Association of America switched gears and began promoting cremation not as a health requirement but rather as a memorial preference. The foundation changed its name to Cremation Association of North America (CANA), in 1975, and is still around today.   

Cremation has been becoming more and more popular since the 1980s in America and around the world. This rise is due to a number of factors such as cost, environmental concerns, creativity, religion and more. While traditional burial is still the most commonly seen disposition method, studies show that might soon change. According to CANA, there were over 2,100 crematories in use in the US in 2009 performing over 9,000 cremations a year, and the number is still going up.   

Cremation Specialist of Pennsylvania, Inc. is continuing this long cremation tradition. We offer Stroudsburg, PA cremations from 728 Main St Avoca, PA 18641. Please give us a call today at (844) 427-3672 if you want to learn more about our services, or if you have any questions about cremation in general.  

 

cremations in Altoona, PA

4 Ways to Get Help Paying for Cremation Expenses

In our modern society, simple cremations can be costly. With price tags going that high, its no wonder that people are looking for help paying for cremations in Altoona, PA and the rest of the country.  

The following is a list of 4 ways you can get help paying for a loved one’s cremation. Use any of these 4 ideas themselves, or take inspiration.  

1. Preplanning – Check the deceased’s papers and information to see if they made any plans to help pay for their cremation. They might have put in place things such as:  

  • Prepaying programs 
  • Funeral insurance 
  • Life insurance  
  • Payable-on-death bank account  

Any of the above can help cover the funeral costs.  

2. Fund Raising – Don’t be afraid to ask for help from your community, neighborhood, friends or other family. You’d be surprised how quickly people will chip in. Get creative with fund raising like:  

  • Car washes or bake sales 
  • Church groups or donations  
  • Memorial funds at the deceased’s workplace or bank 
  • Crowd funding websites like GoFundMe.com or GiveForward.com 

Social media is also a great tool to make your need known and get more people involved.  

3. Government Assistance – Local, state and even federal government programs can help pay for funerals and cremations. Check with your local social service, county treasurer, or public fiduciary to see if any systems are in place. These programs have varying requirements, especially since local government budgets are tight and they are making such programs more difficult to qualify for. Be sure to double check that you are eligible.  

The Social Security Administration can also provide assistance. Call to report a death and you may be eligible for a lump sum or other survivor benefits. Other federal programs that can help include:  

  • Medicare 
  • Medicaid 
  • The Bureau of Indian Affairs 
  • The Railroad Retirement Board 
  • Veteran’s Administration  

4. Low Cost Options – If you still can’t get enough funding, there are tons of low-cost funeral and cremation options you can choose from, including:  

  • Memorial service at home or a community center 
  • Pot-luck food for the service  
  • Service at a church or other religious establishment  
  • Body donation to a medical school or other organization (Science Care is the world’s largest body donor program) 
  • Direct cremation 
  • Burial on family or private property  

Paying for a cremation can be tough, and there is no shame in asking for help. Use any of the above ideas to get help paying for the cremation for your lost loved one, or get creative with more ideas of your own.   

Cremation Specialist of Pennsylvania, Inc, located at 728 Main St Avoca, PA 18641, has years of Altoona, PA cremation experience to help you arrange and pay for your loved one’s cremation. Give us a call today at (844) 427-3672 to learn more about what we can do for you, or about paying for a cremation.  

cremation in State College, PA

From Death To The Cremation

Everyone knows how hard loss is, but not many people talk about how difficult it is to know what to do when faced with a loss. There are a lot of steps between the death itself and the cremation in State College, PA.

Use this list of 8 steps to help guide you through the process of reporting the death to arranging the cremation:

1. Report the Death – The first step is to report the death to the proper authorities. If the death is at a hospital, nursing home, or hospice, the officials there will know what to do and will make the report for you. If you are at home, or have no other options, call 911.

2. Prepare To Work With A Funeral Director or Cremation Attendant – You will need the assistance of a funeral director to complete the death certificate, transport and store the body. Take note if the deceased made pre-arrangements for his or her cremation, and be prepared to relay these wishes to the director.

3. Pick a Type of Service – There are several service options you need to be prepared to choose from:

  • Funerals, in which the service is held before the body is cremated or buried and the body is present
  • Memorials, in which the service is help after the body is buried or cremated and therefore not present

4. Make Cemetery Arrangements – If you choose to inter the cremated remains after the cremation, you will need to make cemetery arrangements. Decide where the burial will take place, and if necessary purchase a plot. If you’re unsure where to start, your cremation attendant will most likely be affiliated with a cemetery and can help you find a plot. You could also check with your church, synagogue or other place of worship for further guidance.

5. Make Service Arrangements – Feel free to get creative when making memorial arrangements to make the service personal and meaningful. Flowers, music, pre or post service events and other special touches help make the service personal for you and the deceased.

6. Plan Formal Transportation – You will need to make arrangements for the body to be transported from the place of death to the crematory.

7. Inform The Family and Write Death Notice – Personally inform all close family, friends and loved ones of the death, ideally over the phone or in person. If you’re nervous, take the time to write a script to help you make key points. Don’t forget to write and release a death notice to notify the rest of the friends, coworkers, associates etc.

8. List Pre-Service Tasks – Make a list of what you need to accomplish before the service to help you stay organized and not forget anything important. This list could include your attire, personal items or collecting photos.

Cremation Specialist of Pennsylvania, Inc, located at 728 Main St Avoca, PA 18641, can help you with making your loved one’s State College, PA cremation arrangements. Please give us a call today at (844) 427-3672 to learn more.

Cremations in Easton, PA

How To Pay For Cremations

Not many people think about the more practical sides of death, like paying for it. Cremations in Easton, PA and the rest of the country can be pretty expensive, and if you don’t make plans now, you might leave your loved ones and family a pretty big bill after you’re gone.   

Unfortunately, planning for cremation payment isn’t as simple as leaving money in a savings account. When you pass away, the bank will freeze your accounts and assets for about a month, or sometimes longer. This means that your family won’t be able to access any money set aside in a bank account until long after the cremation is over.   

There are ways you can set aside money specifically for your cremation. Look into options like:  

  • Insurance – Most life insurance policies will pay out a lump sum of money to a beneficiary when you die. This lump sum can go a long way towards paying for your memorial service and cremation. These insurance payments are made almost directly after death so your loved ones can access the money right away. There are also special insurance policies for death related costs like burials, funerals, cremations and more.  
  • Payable-on-Death Account – Payable-on-death accounts, or PODs, allow you to set money aside specifically for cremation and other death-related expenses. Your beneficiaries simply have to present a death certificate to the bank in order to obtain the money. They will not have access to the money until after your death.  
  • Veterans Benefits – If you served in the military you may be eligible for veteran’s benefits, including burial, funeral or cremation at no cost. The Veterans Administration will pay a burial allowance to your loved ones to cover related expenses. Check the VA website to see if you’re eligible.  
  • Borrowing – Banks also offer loans specifically for cremation expenses. However, as these loans are personal and unsecure, they can get expensive. Interests range usually from 16 to 35 percent on these kinds of loans. Since the FCA recommends that you do not go into debt for a cremation, be sure to only take out a loan you can easily pay back. 
  • Low-Cost Options – If you don’t have money to set aside right now, and feel like you won’t later on either, you can plan for low-cost cremation options. From direct cremations and at-home funerals to green burials, or even donating your body to science, there are definitely low-cost options out there. If you do plan to donate you body to a medical school or other institution be sure to enroll in advance.  

You’ll save your loved ones a lot of stress and money if you make arrangements now to pay for your cremation. If you have any more questions about paying for a cremation, or about Easton, PA cremations in general, Cremation Specialist of Pennsylvania, Inc. can help. Please visit us at 728 Main St Avoca, PA 18641, or give us a call at (844) 427-3672.